3rd Decisive Game

The Phillies are in their 22nd postseason series and it is only the third time they are playing in a decisive last game.  The previous two times were also in a best-of-five series. 

**1980 when the NLCS was a five-game set.  That series with the Houston Astros has to be the most gut-wrenching, tense, nail-biting series ever, with the last four games going extra innings.  Trailing Nolan Ryan, 5-2, after seven innings in the Astrodome, the Phillies rallied to take the lead, saw the Astros come back with two in their eighth.  Extra innings again. Garry Maddox’ double won it in the 10th, 8-7, sending the Phillies to the World Series.

**1981.  The Phillies were well on their way to repeating as NL East champions when a strike interrupted the season.  When play resumed in August, baseball decided to have first-half and second-half winners that would meet in a best-of-five Division Series.   The Phillies were ruled as the first-half winner while the Expos won the second half.  The Expos won the series, 3-2, winning the decisive game at the Vet, 3-0, behind Steve Rogers.

Game 5 History
The Phillies are 9-3 in Game 5 decisions, winning their last seven, including five under Charlie.

Oh, The Offense
In their first 11 innings of this series, the Phillies scored 15 runs against the Cardinals.  Since then, six runs in their last 25 innings. 

Elias Sports Bureau: The Phillies have scored first in Game 2 and 4 but have lost both games.  During the regular season, the Phillies lost only two games in which they scored at least two runs in the first inning. They are 24-2 in those games, both losing coming in April (8, Atlanta; 15, Florida).

Then, the last playoff team to lose two games under the same circumstances: Yankees bowing to the Indians in the ALDS in 1997.

Tonight
Ashburn Alley gates open at 6 p.m.; rest of the gates 30 minutes later.

Ceremonial first ball will be tossed by Greg Luzinski.  The Bull drove in the winning run in two of the three wins over the Astros in the 1980 NLCS.

Kane Kalas, son of the late Harry Kalas will sign the Anthem.  God Bless America, performed by Lauren Hart.

Rally Towels, courtesy of StubHub.  Last time StubHub sponsored rally towels was Game 1 of the NLCS last year…Doc’s no-hitter against the Reds.  Good omen?

Phillies Postseason History
October 7 (3-5 record):
1950 WS #4 at New York: Yankees sweep WS in four games, 5-2, behind rookie Whitey Ford who tosses eight scoreless innings.

1977 NLCS #3 at Veterans Stadium: Gut-wrenching Phillies loss as Dodgers score three with two out in the top of the ninth for a 6-5 win. Bill Russell gets the game-winning single.

1978 NLCS #4 at Los Angeles: Bill Russell’s 10th-inning single gives the Dodgers a 4-3 win, denying the Phillies of a World Series appearance for the third straight October.

1980 NLCS #1 at Veterans Stadium: Greg Luzinski’s 2run homer in the sixth gives the Phillies a 31 win over Houston. First postseason win at home since World Series game #1, 10/8/15.

1981 NLDS #1 at Montreal: Expos (2nd half champs) beat Phillies (1st half champs), 31, in the first Division Series. Phillies out-hit the Expos, 10-8.

1983 NLCS #3 at Veterans Stadium: Gary Matthews drives in four runs and Charles Hudson tosses a four-hitter as Phillies win 7-2 and take a 21 lead over the Dodgers.

1993 NLCS #2 at Veterans Stadium: Atlanta has four home runs among 16 hits in a 143 romp, tying the Series at 11.

2009 NLDS #1 at Citizens Bank Park: Cliff Lee, in his first postseason appearances, tosses a complete game as the Phillies beat the Rockies, 5-1.  Raul Ibanez, also in his first postseason game, drives in two on two hits.

Alumni Postseason History
What is your favorite memory of postseason baseball as a child? . . . What is the biggest change from the regular season? . . . What is your fondest personal postseason memory?

Bobby Wine (SS 1960; 1962-68; CH 1972-83)
“Growing up in Long Island, it seemed like the Dodger and Yankees were in the World Series every year.  Some teachers brought TVs into the classroom so we could watch the games.  One time, they put one in the auditorium.  Watched Don Larsen’s perfect game on a little black and white TV, the voices of Mel Allen and Red Barber, great announcers, the shadows in left field at Yankees Stadium…a lot of memories.

“Getting to the postseason is really hard.  In’ 76, we got there but we weren’t as good as the Big Red Machine.  The next two years, we couldn’t get past the Dodgers and then in 1980, we had the greatest five-game playoff ever against Houston.  Every game came down to one play, one pitch.  The World Series is much more relaxing compared to the playoffs.

“I remember jumping up and down after Tug struck out Willie Wilson in ’80, running on the field and joining the pile.  After the clubhouse scene, I went out to the field to wave to my family because I wanted to share the moment with them.  I ran up the tunnel but the clubhouse was locked to keep media from entering through the dugout. So, I had a beer by myself in the tunnel.”

Menu Addition?
Bull’s BBQ to feature BBQ squirrel.

April fool.

1 Comment

“Menu Addition?
Bull’s BBQ to feature BBQ squirrel.”

Even that didn’t help get the offense to show up. Except for maybe Shane’s 2 hits.

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