- 1979 World Series
Infobox World Series Expanded
year = 1979
champion_games = 98-64, .605, GA: 2
runnerup_games = 102-57, .642, GA: 8
October 10– October 17
Willie Stargell(Pittsburgh) (at 39 was the oldest in history)
television = ABC
Keith Jackson(Game 1-2, 6-7) / Al Michaels(Game 3-5) , Howard Cosell, and Don Drysdale
radio_network = CBS
Vin Scullyand Sparky Anderson
Jerry Neudecker(AL) Bob Engel(NL) Russ Goetz(AL) Paul Runge(NL) Jim McKean(AL) Terry Tata(NL)
HOFers = Pirates:
Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer.
Baltimore Oriolesover California Angels (3-1)
Pittsburgh Piratesover Cincinnati Reds(3-0)
The 1979 World Series matched the
National League's Pittsburgh Pirates(98-64) against the American League's Baltimore Orioles(102-57), with the Pirates coming back from a 3 games to 1 deficit to win the Series in seven games. The Pirates were famous for adopting Sister Sledge's hit anthem "We Are Family" as their theme song.
Bruce Kison, and catcher Manny Sanguillenwere the only players left over from the 1971 Pirates team that faced the Orioles. Orioles' pitcher Jim Palmer, Mark Belanger, and manager Earl Weaverwere the only ones who were still with the team that faced the Pirates in 1971.
In this Series, it was the American League team's "turn" to play by National League rules, meaning no
designated hitterand the Orioles' pitchers would have to bat. While this resulted in Tim Stoddardgetting his first major league hit and RBI in Game 4, overall, it hurt the Orioles because Lee May, their designated hitter for much of the season and a key part of their offense, was only able to bat three times in the whole series.
Pittsburgh Pirateswere the last team to win Game 7 of the World Serieson the road. Willie Stargell, the series MVP, hit .400 with a record seven extra-base hits and matched Reggie Jackson's record of 25 total bases, set in 1977.
These same two teams met at the beginning of the decade, in 1971.
Earl Weaver's Orioles had won the first two games of that series only to lose to Danny Murtaugh's Pirates in seven. This time Pittsburgh manager Chuck Tannerwas looking to win a Series of his own. Gone were the likes of slugger Boog Powelland defensive wizard Brooks Robinson- shortstop Mark Belangerand pitcher Jim Palmerwere the only two remaining players from the 1971 roster. A young (23 year old) "Steady Eddie" Murray was a staple at first-base and an emerging superstar. The only other real "star" hitter on the team was right-fielder Ken Singletonwho set career highs in home runs, 35, and runs batted in, 111, in the regular season. Center fielder Al Bumbryprovided the speed, 37 swipes, and outfielder Gary Roenickeand third-baseman [http://www.baseball-reference.com/d/decindo01.shtml Doug Decinces] provided some additional power. The talented pitching staff was captained by veteran catcher Rick Dempsey. The starters were led by 1979 Cy Young Awardwinner, Mike Flanagan (23-9, 3.08), Scott McGregor (13-6, 3.35), Steve Stone (11-7, 3.77) and Jim Palmer(10-6, 3.30). The bullpen helped with 30 wins against only 13 losses led by Don Stanhouse(7-3, 21 saves) and Tippy Martinez(10-3, 2.88). The Orioles won the American League Eastrather easily, finishing 8 games ahead of 2nd place Milwaukee Brewers.
On the other hand, these
Pittsburgh Piratesstruggled early in the season eventually winning the National League Eastby just 2 games over the Montreal Expos. Only after getting infielders, Tim Foli(from the New York Mets) and Bill Madlock(from the San Francisco Giants), did the Pirates start winning consistently. The great Roberto Clementehad inspired the 1971 team toward the title and the key ingredient to this team was his successor and spiritual leader, 38-year-old Willie "Pops" Stargell. His clubhouse demeanor, a simple good-heartedness and friendly manner, helped keep the Pirates loose during a tight divisional race with a surprise sweep of the always powerful Cincinnati Redsin the divisional playoffs.
The Bucs lineup featured the
National Leagueleader in stolen bases, Omar Morenowith 77; team runs batted in leader, Dave Parkerwith 98, and 2-time batting champion, Bill Madlock(1975, 1976). Madlock would add two more batting titles in 1981 and 1983. The pitching staff was a ragtag bunch led by the "Candy-Man", John Candelaria's 14 wins (9 losses) with five other pitchers winning 10 or more games. The tall and lean Kent Tekulvehad 31 saves, good for 2nd in the league, while winning 10 games.
"Pops" Stargell would hit three home runs in this series becoming the oldest player to win both the regular season MVP and the
World SeriesMVP. His "Family" would come back after losing the first 3 out of 4 games giving Earl Weaverand his Orioles a déjà vunightmare, the Bucs coming back to win in 7 games.
Pittsburgh Pirates(4) vs AL Baltimore Orioles(3)
October 10, 1979at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, MarylandLinescore
WP=Mike Flanagan (1-0)|LP=
Willie Stargell(1)|HomeHR= [http://www.baseball-reference.com/d/decindo01.shtml Doug DeCinces] (1)|
On a cold wet October night, the 1979 World Series got off to an ugly start. The Orioles scored five runs in the first, two on a throwing error by second baseman
Phil Garner, one on a wild pitch by starter Bruce Kison, and the final two on a homer by Doug DeCinces. The Pirate relief corps held the Orioles in check as the Pirates clawed their way back on the strength of four hits by Dave Parkerand a homer by Willie Stargell. The rally fell short, and the O's escaped with a 5-4 win. 1960 World Serieshero Bill Mazeroskithrew out the first ball in Game 5.
October 11, 1979at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, MarylandLinescore
WP=Don Robinson (1-0)|LP=
Don Stanhouse(0-1)|SV= Kent Tekulve(1)
This time, the Pirates struck first with two in the second on an RBI single by
Bill Madlockand a sacrifice fly by catcher Ed Ott. The Orioles countered in the bottom half of the inning with an Eddie Murraysolo homer. Murray would also tie the game in the sixth by doubling in Ken Singleton. Murray tried to put the Orioles ahead in the same inning by tagging and attempting to score on a line-out to right by John Lowenstein, but Dave Parkerthrew him out easily. Making the decision to send Murray that much more odd was the fact that Parker's throw to the plate arrived well ahead of him. Murray tried to bowl Ott over at the plate, but the stocky Ott held fast, staying on his feet.
Murray also made a questionable base running decision in the eighth. With Murray on second with no outs, Lowenstein grounded into the hole between short and third and
Tim Folimade a sensational stop. Murray inexplicably stopped between second and third, and Foli threw to Madlock to force him out, and then Madlock threw to Phil Garnerat second to force Doug DeCincesand complete an unusual double play. Murray would not collect another hit or RBI for the rest of the Series.
The Pirates went ahead in the top of the ninth on a two-out single by Ott, a walk to Garner, and a clutch single by pinch-hitter
Manny Sanguillen. Ott barely slid past the outstretched arms of catcher Rick Dempseyto score the winning run. Kent Tekulveretired the side in the ninth for the save.
October 12, 1979at Three Rivers Stadiumin Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaLinescore
WP=Scott McGregor (1-0)|LP=
John Candelariataking the mound for the Pirates, Oriole manager Earl Weavermade a couple of lineup changes, hoping to spark more offense. He led off with [http://www.baseball-reference.com/g/garciki01.shtml Kiko Garcia] , playing shortstop in place of light-hitting Mark Belanger, and used Benny Ayalain place of Al Bumbry. Ayala and Garcia were both right-handed hitters. The moves paid off as Ayala slammed a two-run homer in the third, and Garcia sparked a five-run rally in the fourth with a bases-loaded triple as part of a 4-for-4, 4 RBI evening. O's starter Scott McGregor pitched a complete game for the victory.
October 13, 1979at Three Rivers Stadiumin Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaLinescore
Tim Stoddard(1-0)|LP= Kent Tekulve(0-1)|SV=
The Pirates jumped on starter
Dennis Martinezfor four runs in the second on a homer by Stargell, a 2-run double by Ott, and an RBI single by Omar Moreno. The Orioles struck back with three in the third off Jim Bibbyon a 2-run double by Game 3 hero Garcia, followed by an RBI double by Ken Singleton. The Pirates stretched the lead to 6-3 on single runs in the fifth and sixth on RBI doubles by John Milnerand Dave Parker.
In the eighth,
Earl Weaveronce again showed some strategic genius. With one out and the bases loaded, Pirates manager Chuck Tannersent in submarining relief ace Kent Tekulveto face right-handed hitting Gary Roenicke. Weaver countered by pinch-hitting lefty John Lowenstein, figuring the lefty would be better able to hit Tekulve's sidewhip pitches. Lowenstein made the move pay off by slamming a 2-run double. After a walk loaded the bases again, Weaver sent another lefty hitter, Terry Crowley, to bat for [http://www.baseball-reference.com/s/skaggda01.shtml Dave Skaggs] . Crowley smashed another two-run double off Tekulve to give the Orioles the lead. To add insult to injury, pitcher Tim Stoddard, batting because Weaver was out of pinch hitters at that point, followed with an RBI single. An RBI force-out by Bumbry ended the scoring.
October 14, 1979at Three Rivers Stadiumin Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaLinescore
Bert Blyleven(1-0)|LP=Mike Flanagan (1-1)|SV=|
With a world championship on the line and Game 1 starter
Bruce Kisoninjured, Chuck Tannerdecided to go with little-used veteran left-hander Jim Rookeras his starter. He would let Rooker go as long as possible, then bring in Bert Blylevento finish, saving his two best pitchers, sore-shouldered John Candelariaand Jim Bibbyfor Games 6 and 7, if played. The risky move more than paid off as Rooker gave Tanner five good innings, holding the Orioles to one run in the fifth when Gary Roenickescored on a double play grounder. The Pirate bats finally came alive against Mike Flanagan in the sixth on a Dave ParkerRBI single and a sacrifice fly by Willie Stargell. The Pirates added two more in the seventh on a RBI triple by Tim Foliand a RBI double by Parker, and then three more in the eighth on a RBI single by Phil Garnerand a two-run single by Foli. Thanks to the unexpected performance from Rooker, a 4-for-4 day from Bill Madlock, and Foli's 3 RBIs, the Pirates had staved off defeat. Chuck Tanner's mother died the morning of Game 5 (this was mentioned during the telecast by announcer Howard Cosell).
October 16, 1979at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, MarylandLinescore
John Candelaria(1-1)|LP= Jim Palmer(0-1)|SV= Kent Tekulve(2)|
Back home at Memorial Stadium, the Oriole bats continued to be unexpectedly cold as
John Candelariaand Jim Palmerlocked into a scoreless duel through six innings. Dave Parkerbroke the ice with a RBI single in the seventh, followed by a Stargell sacrifice fly. The Pirates added two more runs in the eighth on a Bill Robinsonsac fly and a RBI single by Omar Moreno.
October 17, 1979at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, MarylandLinescore
WP=Grant Jackson (1-0)|LP=Scott McGregor (1-1)|SV=
Willie Stargell(3)|HomeHR= Rich Dauer(1)|
The Pirates capped an amazing comeback on the strength of
Willie Stargell, who went 4 for 5 with a single, two doubles, and a towering two-run homer in the sixth off Scott McGregor. For insurance in the ninth, Omar Morenocollected an RBI single, while another run scored when Dave Parkerand Bill Robinsonwere hit by pitches back-to-back, scoring Moreno. The O's only run came on a Rich Dauersolo homer in the third, the team's only RBI in the last three games. Significantly, Eddie Murray, the Orioles' main offensive threat, was 0 for 21 in the final five games of the Series. Following their six run outburst in the eighth inning of Game 4, the Birds scored only twice more over the series' final 28 innings.
Jimmy Cartermade an appearance in Game 7, he threw out the first ball, and after the game made a visit to the victorious Pittsburgh locker room.
1979 World Series (4-3):
Pittsburgh Pirates(N.L.) over Baltimore Orioles(A.L.)Linescore
Total Attendance: 367,597 Average Attendance: 52,514 | Winning Player’s Share: – $28,264 Losing Player’s Share – $22,114cite web|url=http://www.baseball-almanac.com/ws/wsshares.shtml|title=World Series Gate Receipts and Player Shares|accessdate=2008-05-07|publisher=Baseball Almanac]
*Five Pirates had 10 or more hits in this series, a World Series record.
The Pirates wore four different uniform combinations during the series:
* gold cap, black jersey and gold pants for Games 1 & 5
* black cap, gold jersey and black pants for Games 2, 6 & 7
* black cap and solid white pinstriped uniform for Game 3
* black cap and solid gold uniform for Game 4.
This was the first World Series in which the participating teams' announcers were not involved in the play-calling on national radio, (Network television had done the same in 1977.) For the '79 Classic,
Vin Scullyand Sparky Andersonhandled the play-by-play work for the CBS Radio Network. But because of their lead-announcer status for CBS Radio, Scully and Jack Buckdid wind up calling their regular teams' Series games on CBS Radio in the 1980s - Scully in 1981 (his Los Angeles Dodgersvs. the New York Yankees) and Buck in 1985 and 1987 (Buck's St. Louis Cardinalsagainst the Kansas City Royalsand Minnesota Twins). The Series was televised by ABC, with play-by-playannouncers Keith Jackson(in Baltimore) and Al Michaels(in Pittsburgh), and color commentators Howard Coselland Don Drysdale.
*In 2006 a "collector's edition"
DVDbox set, featuring the complete ABC telecasts of all seven games, was issued by Major League Baseball and A&E Home Video.
*Neft, David S., and Richard M. Cohen. The World Series. 1st ed. New York: St Martins, 1990. (Neft and Cohen 377-382)
*Reichler, Joseph, ed. (1982). "The Baseball Encyclopedia" (5th ed.), p. 2209. MacMillian Publishing. ISBN 0-02-579010-2.
*cite web |author=Forman, Sean L. |title=1979 World Series |date= |work=Baseball-Reference.com - Major League Statistics and Information. |url=http://www.baseball-reference.com/postseason/1979_WS.shtml |accessdate=2007-12-09
* [http://www.baseball-reference.com/postseason/1979_WS.shtml 1979 World Series at Baseball-Reference.com]
* [http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/mlb/history/postseason/mlb_ws_recaps.jsp?feature=1979 1979 World Series at "WorldSeries.com (MLB.com)"]
* [http://baseball-almanac.com/ws/yr1979ws.shtml 1979 World Series by Baseball Almanac]
* [http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/mlb/features/1997/wsarchive/1979.html Rising from the Ashes at SI.com]
* [http://www.sportingnews.com/archives/worldseries/1979.html History of the World Series - 1979 at SportingNews.com]
* [http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1979/YPS_1979.htm 1979 World Series box scores and play-by-play at Retrosheet.org]
* [http://www.baseballlibrary.com/baseballlibrary/teams/1979pirates.stm 1979 Pittsburgh Pirates at baseballlibrary.com]
* [http://www.baseballlibrary.com/baseballlibrary/teams/1979orioles.stm 1979 Baltimore Orioles at baseballlibrary.com]
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