Beginning tonight and running through the end of October, a new series will be presented here at TBOH highlighting the Philadelphia Phillies history in the Fall Classic. More specifically, we’ll be taking a look back at each win that the Phils franchise has experienced in the World Series.
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The Phillies have won seven National League pennants, meaning that they have advanced to make that many appearances in the World Series. They won twice, in 1980 and again in 2008. Over the course of those seven Series’, the club has won 14 games. The series will take a look at each of those 14 victories.
The Phils experience in the Fall Classic began in 1915, in what was 12th battle between the champions of the National and American Leagues. It was not, however, the city of Philadelphia’s first experience. The AL’s Philadelphia Athletics had already appeared in five of the first 11, winning three times.
The Phillies won their very first World Series game, taking a 3-1 decision over the Boston Red Sox at Baker Bowl in that 1915 showdown. However, Boston stormed back to win the next four games, all by one run, and took the series.
The Phils did not make another appearance in the World Series until 1950, and the close losing continued. The ‘Whiz Kids’ were swept by the mighty New York Yankees that year, with the first three losses all by one run. The Phillies had lost seven consecutive one-run World Series games before the Yanks put away that 1950 Series with a 5-2 win in the finale.
It would be another three decades before the 1980 Phillies fought to the franchise’ first ever World Series championship, winning in six games over the Kansas City Royals. In 1983, the club returned to the Fall Classic, and won the opener over the Baltimore Orioles. But the O’s stormed back to win four straight.
Another decade would pass before the scruffy, scrappy ‘Macho Row’ club of mulleted overachievers would win the fifth N.L. pennant in franchise history. That club would extend the powerful defending champion Toronto Blue Jays to six games, before Joe Carter walked off into baseball history.
It was then a long 15 seasons until the 2008 Phillies fought past the talented Tampa Bay Rays and the weather to win just the second World Series crown in franchise history, with the Game Six finale taking place over two days thanks to an epic rain storm.
The following year of 2009, the Phillies won the seventh and most recent National League pennant in club history, and advanced to the World Series as defending champions for the first time. However, the Phils were worn down and dethroned by a strong, veteran New York Yankees team in six games.
Beginning with the victory by the 1915 Phillies in the very first World Series game in franchise history, and continuing through Game 5 of the 2009 World Series that briefly kept alive hopes of a repeat crown, the coming TBOH series will take you back to each of the Fall Classic wins.
We’ll recall the games and circumstances themselves, examine the build up and the aftermath of each win, and talk about some of the key players and moments. When it’s all over at the end of the month, we’ll present a poll asking for your own favorite of all these Phillies great Fall Classic victories.
Some of the greatest players in Phillies history contributed to these historic victories, players such as “Grover Cleveland” Pete Alexander, Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton, Darren Daulton, Curt Schilling, Ryan Howard, Cole Hamels, and Chase Utley. We’ll highlight them, as well as numerous other names, some very familiar, some largely lost to time for many fans.
The series will be presented in a Super Bowl format, with each piece numbered with Roman numerals. So that first 1915 victory will be “Phillies Fall Classic I”, and the final win to date in the 2009 Series will be “Phillies Fall Classic XIV”. The first will be released tonight, and the series will continue with a handful of classics over this weekend.