Pivotal World Series Plays
Jackson Hit by the Throw
1978 World Series Game 4: Los Angeles Dodgers @ New York Yankees
The 1978 World Series had one of the most controversial plays in Fall Classic history. Reg­gie Jackson's five home runs (including three in one game) had powered the Yankees to the championship over the Dodgers the previous year. He now played a major role in Game 4 in '78 with his bat, as you would expect, but also with his leg.
The Yankees trail the Dodgers 2-1 in games. It's the bottom of the sixth. Los Angeles starter Tommy John is cruising with a 3-0 lead. However, New York scores a run on a one-out Jackson single that plates LF Roy White and moves C Thurman Munson to second.
Lou Piniella steps to the plate. The future Cubs manager hits a sinking liner to the left of Dodger SS Bill Russell. The ball hits Russell's glove and falls to ground. Munson is still near the second base bag but starts for third when he sees the ball drop. Russell ignores a chance to tag Munson and instead steps on second to force Jackson and throws to first to try to complete an inning-ending double play.
Meanwhile, Jackson, expecting Russell to catch the liner, returns to first. As the throw comes in, Reggie, who has turned to face second base, turns his right leg slightly into the ball. It hits his leg and bounces into right field, allowing Munson to score the Yankees' second run. Watch a video of the play ...

L-R: Reggie Jackson, Tommy John, Thurman Munson, Bill Russell
Dodger manager Tommy LaSorda is livid. He argues that "Mr. October" interfered with the throw and could not impede the play made on another runner. Piniella should be called out at first. Frank Pulli, the National League umpire at first base, disagrees, saying Jack­son's interference was not intentional. So Munson's run stands. Dodger 1B Steve Garvey, the closest person to the play, later says Reggie's play was "quick thinking, but dirty pool."
New York ties the game in the 8th on a Munson double and wins in the tenth on a Piniella single. The Yankees also win the next two games to defend their crown.

L-R: Frank Pulli andSteve Garvey right after the disputed play, Tom LaSorda, Ron Cey
After the Series, Lasorda said, "I think the Reggie Jackson play changed the complexion of the whole Series because Tommy John was winning that ballgame. It would have been the third out." (Baseball Digest, August 2007)
Dodger 3B Ron Cey on the aftermath of Reggie's play: "We just didn't handle it well."