Golden Baseball Magazine

The Ultimate Game

This series presents the final game of each post-season series that went all the way.
Until 1946, that means World Series Game Sevens (none of the best-of-nine World Series went the full length).
1979 - Game 7: Pittsburgh Pirates @ Baltimore Orioles

Earl Weaver

Bert Blyleven

Chuck Tanner

The 1979 pennant races produced winners who hadn't been to the Series since they met each other in 1971.
  • Orioles manager Earl Weaver had won five of the first six AL East titles. Then the Birds finished out of the money from 1975-78, though the team remained competitive.
  • Earl always built his teams around terrific pitching, excellent defense, and an offense featuring the three-run homer.
  • Pitching - The Orioles led the league in ERA. Their 3.26 mark led the second place Yankees' figure by the margin that separated the NY from the 10th place team. Six hurlers boasted double-digit wins: Southpaw Mike Flanagan (23-9/3.08), the AL Cy Young Award winner, Dennis Martinez (15-16/3.66), lefty Scott McGregor (13-6/3.35), Steve Stone (11-7/3.77), 33-year-old Jim Palmer (10-6/3.30), and Tippy Martinez, a third portsider (10-3/2.88). The impressive starting rotation was backed by a deep and versatile bullpen.
  • Defense - Baltimore's .980 fielding % was just .001 behind the Yankees and Tigers.
  • Offense - The Orioles finished third in the AL in HRs with 181 but sat in the middle of the pack in runs. RF Ken Singleton led the club with 35 roundtrippers, 93 runs, and 111 RBI. 23-year-old 1B Eddie Murray and LF Gary Roenicke blasted 25 four-baggers each.
  • After starting 3-8, Weaver's boys won 26 of their next 32 to rise to the top of the division. Baltimore held 1st place from May 18 to the end of the season, eventually winning by 8 after coasting the last week.
  • They booted the Angels back to California in four games, winning the final ALCS contest 8-0 behind McGregor's six-hit shutout. Along the way, they showed their versatility by taking a 9-8 slugfest.

A family approach propelled the Pirates to the Senior Circuit crown.

  • The undisputed leader of the Buccos was 39-year-old 1B Willie Stargell, who won the NL co-MVP Award with these figures: .281 BA, 82 RBI, 32 HR, and .904 On-Base Plus Slugging. "Pops" also earned the same award for the NLCS, a 3-0 sweep over the Cincinnati Reds.
    P Bert Blyleven recalled: Stargell was the epitome of a team leader. He was an amazing man. He had a way about him that made everyone naturally want to follow him. He just had a great knack of dealing with people. He was the rock, on the field and in the clubhouse.
  • Willie chose the popular disco hit "We Are Family" by Sister Sledge to be the team's theme song.
    Decades later, 2B Phil Garner said: Even today people will say, "You played for 'The Family." We were about as diverse a group of guys you would ever meet, but we all pulled together like we were part of one large family. That song really was a rallying point for us, as corny as it might sound today.
  • If the Orioles' strong suit was pitching, the Pirates boasted the NL's best offense: 775 runs, 36 more than the 2nd place Dodgers. The Bucs also ranked the top in a statistic that has been retroactively computed: .746 On-Base + Slugging %.
  • Naturally, Stargell could not do it alone. RF Dave Parker led the club with 94 RBI and ranked second with 25 HR. Fleet CF Omar Moreno scored 110 times, one more than Parker. 3B Bill Madlock hit .328 after being acquired from the Giants midway through the season.
  • When the Madlock deal went through June 28, Pittsburgh sat in 3rd place, 6.5 games behind the Montreal Expos. They won exactly 2/3 of their remaining games to finish 8.5 lengths in front of the Expos.
  • None of that would have happened without solid pitching. The Pirates were third in the circuit in ERA (3.41) and third in runs allowed (643).
  • No pitcher stood head and shoulders above the rest of the staff. Southpaw John Candelaria led in wins with only 14, closely followed by Bruce Kison with 13 and Bert Blyleven with 12. Underhander Kent Tekulve recorded 31 saves, second to Bruce Sutter's 37 in the league.
  • Manager Chuck Tanner didn't hesitate to go to his pen. Tekulve topped the circuit with 94 appearances, with Enrique Romo second with 84, and Grant Jackson next at 72.
  • The Pirates' 98 wins were the most by a Pittsburgh team since the '09 champions won 110.
    Tanner always said Stargell made his job easy. P Don Robinson agreed. I really don't remember having one team meeting the entire year. Willie took care of everything in the clubhouse and that allowed Chuck to just concentrate on managing the team.
    Dave Parker put it this way: I always liked to say that Chuck managed with just one eye and one ear. What I mean by that is Chuck kept an eye on things and knew what was going on, but he never tried to micro-manage the team. He understood us and trusted us. He was a great baseball man, a great person and the perfect man to manage that team.

Dave Anderson of the New York Times liked the way the two participants played the game.

The charm of the World Series is that the Baltimore Orioles and the Pittsburgh Pirates play baseball the way it is meant to be played - for fun, not finances.
Coincidentally, not since the Pirates of Roberto Clemente won the 1971 World Series from the Orioles in seven games has baseball been assured a championship team that treated the game like a game. The last two years the New York Yankees resembled the board room of a conglomerate. The two years before that, the Cincinnati Reds resembled a nuclear reactor. And the three years before that the Oakland A's resembled a cage of lions snarling at their tamer, Charles O. Finley, before escaping from the circus.
These Orioles and Pirates are different. Many are old pros who are aware of the prize money, but they are also big kids with a "lot of the little boy in them," to use the phrase of Roy Campanella, one of baseball's most thoughtful philosophers.

A computer model developed at Johns Hopkins and Yale universities pegged the Pirates as 7-to- 6 favorite to win the Series.

  • Once again, Commissioner Bowie Kuhn refused to allowed the designated hitter in the World Series.
  • Earl Weaver felt not having the DH in his lineup would make a difference. It's going to hurt us because it means Lee May will have to be on the bench, and that's a pretty big bat to take out of a lineup. What the overall effects will be depends on what the other eight guys do. May would be used strictly as a pinch hitters. Trying to get him into the lineup would detail changing too many defensive positions around.
  • The Pittsburgh pitchers collectively batted .150.

Mother Nature scored the first victory in the Fall Classic.

  • Heavy rain turned Memorial Stadium into a quagmire and forced a World Series opener to be postponed for the first time.
  • The rainout meant there would be no travel day between Games 2 and 3 as originally planned.
Series Results
  1. Wednesday, October 10 @ Baltimore: Orioles 5 Pirates 4
    WP: Mike Flanagan; LP: Bruce Kison
  2. Thursday, October 11 @ Baltimore: Pirates 3 Orioles 2
    WP: Don Robinson; LP: Don Stanhouse
  3. Friday, October 12 @ Pittsburgh: Orioles 8 Pirates 4
    WP: Scott McGregor; LP: John Candelaria
  4. Saturday, October 13 @ Pittsburgh: Orioles 9 Pirates 6
    WP: Tim Stoddard; LP: Kent Tekulve
  5. Sunday, October 14 @ Pittsburgh: Pirates 7 Orioles 1
    WP: Bert Blyleven; LP: Flanagan
  6. Tuesday, October 16 @ Baltimore: Pirates 4 Orioles 0
    WP: John Candelaria; LP: Jim Palmer

The turning point of the Series came in Game 5.

  • The Pirates had blown a 6-3 lead the day before when Baltimore erupted for six in the 8th to take a commanding 3-1 lead in games.
  • The next day, Mike Flanagan coasted into the bottom of the 6th with a 1-0 lead.
  • The Bucs plated two runs to take the lead and added five more over the next two innings to win 7-1.
  • They continued their momentum two nights later when John Candelaria pitched six shutout innings, and Kent Tekulve shut the door the next three innings to tie the Series.
Pittsburgh Lineup
Omar Moreno CF
Tim Foli SS
Dave Parker RF
Bill Robinson LF
Willie Stargell 1B
Bill Madlock 3B
Steve Nicosia C
Phil Garner 2B
Jim Bibby P
Baltimore Lineup
Al Bumbry CF
Kiko Garcia SS
Ken Singleton RF
Eddie Murray 1B
John Lowenstein LF
Doug DeCinces 3B
Rick Dempsey C
Rich Dauer 2B
Scott McGregor P

Jim Bibby

Scott McGregor

Omar Moreno

Tim Foli

Dave Parker

Bill Robinson

Al Bumbry

Kiko Garcia

Ken Singleton

Bill Madlock

Phil Garner

Eddie Murray

John Lowenstein

Doug DeCinces

Rick Dempsey

Wild Bill Hagy, "the most famous cab driver in America"

Manny Sanguillen

Don Robinson - the stars on the cap were awarded by Stargell

Grant Jackson

Stargell puts Pirates ahead.

Gary Roenicke

Lee May

Mark Belanger

Kent Tekulve

Terry Crowley

Tim Stoddard

Mike Flanagan

Don Stanhouse

Tippy Martinez

Dennis Martinez

Pat Kelly

Pirates rejoice.

Game 7: Wednesday, October 17 @ Memorial Stadium
  • The Pirates hoped to become only the fifth team in history to come back from a 3-1 deficit and win the Series.
  • Tanner chose big right-hander Jim Bibby to take the mound against southpaw Scott McGregor, winner of Game 3.
    McGregor, whom the Yankees signed for an $80,000 bonu in 1972, came to the Orioles in a 10-player swap in 1976. He described himself as a kid who, ever since he was five years old, has dreamed of pitching in the seventh game of the World Series.
    By contrast, Bibby signed with the New York Mets in 1965 for a salary of $400 a month and college tuition for two semesters at $400 a semester.
  • A baseball axiom decreed that good pitching stops good hitting. But the Pirates had touched the AL's best staff for a .339 average. After being outscored 24-17 in the first four games, the Bucs had won the next two by an 11-1 margin.
  • Jim Russo, special assistant to Baltimore GM Hank Peters and the club's No. 1 scout, explained. You are looking at one of the best hitting teams that has come around in a long time. They have one of the finest hitting teams I've seen. We've thrown good pitches, but they've hit them.
  • Bill Werle, who scouted the Pirates down the stretch, added his two cents. Some of their hitters are doing better than I expected. We're not hitting the spots. But our pitchers have arms, not rifles or radar guns to zero in with. And pitchers have their own style. You're not going to tell a sinker ball pitcher to throw a guy high.

ABC broadcast the Series.

  • Keith Jackson (games 1-2, 6-7) and Al Michaels (games 3-5) had shared the play-by-play duties with Don Drysdale and Howard Cosell providing commentary.
  • An estimated 80 million people - the largest audience in the history of World Series games at that point - watched the game.
  • President Jimmy Carter was among the 53,733 in attendance. An Atlanta Braves fan, he wsa attending his first World Series ever. With him was Speaker of the House Tip O'Neill, a rabid Red Sox fan from Massachusetts.

1st inning

  • CF Omar Moreno had gone 1-for-10 on the first two games in Baltimore but had smacked seven hits in 18 ABs since. He lined a hanging 1-1 curve into CF for a single.
    Moreno's wife had become nationally famous thanks to the ABC cameras showing the players' wives in the stands during the games. She incessantly blew a whistle and yelled "Let's go, Sweetie" every time her husband came up.
    With bespectaculed SS Tim Foli at the plate, McGregor kept an eye on Moreno, who had led the NL in steals for the second year in a row with 77. Scott threw over several times and actually had Moreno going back to the bag when he delivered to the plate. Foli laid down a bunt that the P fielded to the right of the mound for the out at 1st as Omar advanced to 2nd.
    Free-swinging Dave Parker went for the first offering and popped to 3B Doug DeCinces.
    Parker had experienced problems with his left knee down the stretch of the season and was having difficulty pushing off when he swung. Nevertheless, he had ten hits in the Series.
    Next came LF Bill Robinson, batting cleanup against the southpaw. He also popped to 3rd.
  • CF Al Bumbry, 9" shorter than the 6-5 Bibby, topped a grounder to 1B Stargell, who took the ball by the bag and tagged the sliding runner.
    SS Kiko Garcia, the surprise Oriole hitting star with a .417 average, grounded out 4-3.
    RF Ken Singleton hit a hard chopper to Stargell who tossed to Bibby covering to retire the side.
2nd inning
  • Stargell stepped in hitting .320 (8 for 25) with 2 HR and 5 RBI. Willie blooped a single to LF and continued to 2nd when John Lowenstein booted the ball.
    3B Bill Madlock grounded to SS, Stargell holding 2nd.
    C Steve Nicosia, (1-for-12), in the game in place of Ed Ott against the lefthanded starter, swung a thin bat that looked like a pipe. He popped to DeCinces just on the outfield grass.
    Using the lack of a DH to his advantage, Earl Weaver ordered an intentional walk for redhot Phil Garner (11-for-21, .524, with 5 RBI). Earlier in the day, Earl learned that the Sporting News had named him ML Manager of the Year.
    The strategy worked. Bibby waved at two pitches before bouncing to 2B Rich Dauer who threw to McGregor covering 1st.
  • 1B Eddie Murray, batting only .182, struck out on a sharp curve.
    Murray entered the game without a hit in his previous 17 times at bat. He had no explanation. They're just getting me out. The ball's not falling in. That's where slumps come from.
    Lowenstein also went down on a 12-to-6 curve.
    DeCinces was another Oriole in a slump (.143). But he hit the first pitch up the middle for a single.
    C Rick Dempsey brought his .333 average (6-for-18) to the dish and lowered it by rolling to 3rd.

3rd inning

  • Moreno was not your typical leadoff man. He had only one walk in 30 World Series appearances and that was intentional. That was one of the reasons he had led the Senior Circuit in ABs the last two years. He lined to Singleton in RF.
    Garcia ranged behind 2B to grab Foli's hard grounder and threw him out.
    Parker swung at every pitch he saw, fouling off one and missing the other three.
  • Baltimore broke the scoring ice when Dauer (.286, 4-for-14) lofted the first pitch into the LF stands. Bibby tried to get ahead with a high fast ball.
    It was only the fourth HR of the Series for the Orioles, who had averaged more than one homer per game during the season. It was also their first run following a 21-inning drought.
    Weaver had planned to start switch-hitter Billy Smith at 2B but decided an hour and a half before game time to go with Dauer, who smacked nine homers during the season.
    Don Robinson, who had won Game 2 with two scoreless relief innings, started throwing in the Pittsburgh bullpen.
    With the crowd alive and cheering wildly, McGregor bounded out 6-3.
    Bumbry, who was now only 3-for-19, popped to SS as lefty Dave Roberts joined Robinson in the pen.
    Garcia grounded a single to the left of a diving Garner.
    With Singleton at the plate, Kiko was thrown out stealing 2-6 to retire the side.
    Orioles 1 Pirates 0
4th inning
  • Robinson skied to Dempsey in front of the plate.
    Stargell again hit to LF, his bloop turning a sprinting DeCinces around down the line and rolling into foul territory for a double.
    Madlock hit the first pitch on the ground to Garcia, who threw wide to 3rd, allowing Stargell to slide in safely.
    With an excellent chance to tie the game, Nicosia hit the ball hard but right at Dauer, whose throw to 1st was not in time to double off Madlock.
    Dennis Martinez jumped up in the Baltimore bullpen.
    Garner popped to Murray, who moved in front of 1B just inside the line to catch the ball as Garner collided with him. 1B umpire Bob Engel immediately signalled Phil out for interference.
  • Wild Bill Hagy pumped up the Orioles fans with his O-R-I-O-L-E-S cheer from the top of the dugout between innings.
    Singleton returned to the plate and hit a short fly to Robinson in LF.
    Enrique Romo threw for the Pirates as Bibby worked on Murray. Eddie's woes continued as he whiffed again.
    Lowenstein fouled to Madlock in the wide foul area opposite 3B.

5th inning

  • Manny Sanguillen hit for Bibby and bounced the 0-2 pitch to the mound.
    Sanguillen hit .379 as the Pirates starting C in their 1971 World Series triumph over the Orioles.
    Don Robinson prepared to take over in the bottom of the inning.
    Moreno actually took a pitch between swings before hitting a soft liner to Lowenstein.
    The LF also caught Foli's liner.
  • After falling into an 0-2 hole, DeCinces smacked a line drive single to CF.
    Dempsey made the hurler work but finally flied to RF.
    With his average up to .333, Dauer lined to Moreno.
    When Robinson walked McGregor on a 3-2 pitch, Tanner called for 36-year-old lefty Grant Jackson.
    Jackson had pitched for the Orioles against the Pirates in the 1971 Fall Classic. Grant was also part of the 1976 deal with the Yankees that brought McGregor to Baltimore.
    Bumbry ended the threat by fouling to Madlock.

6th inning

  • The Pirates finally broke through, and it was no surprise to anyone who did it.
    The inning started innocently enough with Parker bouncing out 4-3.
    Robinson sent the second pitch on the ground off Garcia's glove into LF for a hit.
    Stargell swatted the first pitch, a curve ball, just over the fence into the bullpen in RCF. Just like that, the Bucs led 2-1.

    Stargell delivers again.
    Afterward, Stargell called his first two hits "chinkers." I'd been leaning too far out anticipating McGregor throwing breaking pitches low and away. When I saw the curve ball (in the 6th), I was determined not to open up. I wanted to keep my bat up there. I didn't think I had enough bat speed to hit it out, but there must have been enough.
    Bert Blyleven recalled: You just knew Willie would come through. He came through in the clutch all year long. It seemed like every time we needed a big hit, Willie got it.
    DeCinces went into foul territory to backhand Madlock's grounder and make an accurate throw to 1st for the out.
    Nicosia bounced the first pitch through the box, but Garcia fielded it behind 2nd and tossed him out.
    Pirates 2 Orioles 1
  • With Jackson still on the hill, Garcia popped to 2B.
    Bert Blyleven started throwing in the Pirate pen.
    Singleton pushed Moreno all the way to the warning track in straightaway CF for out #2.
    Batting righthanded now, Murray fouled the 1st pitch to Stargell.
7th inning
  • McGregor set down the first two batters with no trouble: Garner 5-3 and Jackson, surprisingly hitting for himself, 6-3. Tanner made a mild protest to 1B umpire Engle on the second out.
    Moreno whacked the second pitch on the ground just past Dauer diving to his left.
    With the southpaw on the hill known for holding runners well, Moreno made no move for 2nd during Foli's AB, which ended with a 5-4 forceout.
    After stealing 188 bases during the season, the Pirates didn't steal even one during the Series.
  • Weaver played the percentages. He sent up Gary Roenicke, a right-handed batter, to hit for Lowenstein. But Jackson, a 15-year veteran, struck him out.
    Another right-handed hitter, DeCinces, fared little better, flying to Moreno.
    Dempsey ended the inning with a fly to left.

8th inning

  • Roenicke stayed in the game in LF.
    Parker worked the count full before fanning.
    Robinson flied to Roenicke at the edge of the warning track.
    Stargell got hold of the first delivery but pulled it foul into the stands down the RF line. Two pitches later, he doubled off the LCF wall at the 378' mark. He was now 4-for-4 with two two-baggers and a homer.
    Madlock was intentionally passed.
    Nicosia rapped the first pitch on the ground to Garcia who tossed to 2nd to end the threat.
  • Jackson retired another right-handed hitter, Dauer, on a pop to SS.
    Weaver called on Lee May, his DH most of the season, to bat for McGregor. Lee walked on five pitches.
    Mark Belanger ran for May. RHP Kent Tekulve and southpaw Jim Rooker worked in the bullpen
    After fouling off three full count deliveries, Bumbry drew a walk to move the potential tying run to 2nd.
    Tanner waited for right-handed PH Benny Ayala to be announced for Garcia before calling for his closer, Tekulve.
    Weaver's move was puzzling since Kiko was hitting an even .400 for the Series.
    The chess match continued when Terry Crowley, a left-handed hitter whose two-run double had been the decisive blow in Game 4, replaced Ayala and hit a slow grounder to 2nd, both runners advancing.
    Tanner then ordered a free pass for the third-place hitter, Singleton, a left-handed batter, to get to the cleanup hitter, Murray, a switch-hitter. The move made sense because Ken was hitting .357 and Eddie only .160.
    In the most important at-bat of the Series, Eddie took two balls, then got hold of an outside pitch and drove it to deep RF, where it came down into the glove of Parker.
    Tekulve on Murray's AB: It was a real touchy situation. With the bases loaded, I couldn't get too far behind in the count because I sure didn't want to walk in the tying run. And I certainly didn't want to give Murray anything in the heart of the plate because he could jerk it out of the ball park.
    had now stranded 13 runners during his hitless streak and wiped out two others on double plays.
9th inning
  • Belanger went out to SS and righty Tim Stoddard stepped to the rubber.
    Garner doubled to LF.
    Tekulve tried to bunt the runner over but failed as Phil stayed on 2nd while Stoddard threw to Dauer covering 1st.
    Not wanting to surrender an insurance run, Weaver called on his lefty starter from Game 5, Mike Flanagan, to face Moreno.
    But Omar crossed up the strategy by singling to CF, Garner scoring.
    That brought in Don Stanhouse, a right-hander, to face Foli.
    The Pirates continued to confound Earl's plans. Tim singled to LCF as Moreno raced to 3rd.
    So the Oriole skipper brought in his fourth pitcher of the inning, southpaw Tippy Martinez.
    But that move backfired when Tippy hit Parker to load the sacks.
    Now it was Dennis Martinez's turn to try to get someone out. Unbelievingly, Denny plunked Robinson with a pitch to force in another run.
    That wasn't smart since it brought up Stargell, who hadn't been retired all evening. With a chance to blow the lid off the game, Willie attacked four straight pitches. The first three went foul. The fourth bounced to Belanger who stepped on 2nd and threw to 1st to complete a 6-3 double play.
    Pirates 4 Orioles 1
  • With his job now much easier, Tekulve breezed through the 9th.
    Roenicke went down swinging.
    So did DeCinces on three pitches.
    Tekulve: I didn't really get cranked up until just before that last out. Then I went over to Mad Dog (Madlock) and said, "This is the one guy we've been looking to get out since February.
    Pat Kelly pinch-hit for Dempsey. At least he didn't strike out. He hit the first pitch to CF where Moreno snagged it to start a wild Family celebration, with Pirate fans leaving the stands to join in.
    Tekulve didn't bother to watch Moreno catch the final out. All of a sudden, it hit me. We're the World Champs. It's ours, and nobody can take it away from us.

View the entire game.


  • The official scorers awarded the victory to Grant Jackson, who hurled 2 2/3 innings of hitless, runless ball.
  • The Orioles scored only two runs in the last three games.
  • The Pirates' .323 average was the highest ever for a Series winner.
    The 1979 Pirates became the first team to win the World Series without a 15-game winner of the staff.
To no one's surprise, Stargell won the Series MVP Award.
  • He finished with an even .400 batting average (12-of-30) with 3 HR and 7 RBI.
  • His seven extra-base hits set a Fall Classic record.
Future Hall of Famers in the 1979 World Series
Pittsburgh: Bert Blyleven, Willie Stargell
Baltimore: Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer, coach Frank Robinson, manager Earl Weaver

Pirates' Clubhouse

  • Tears flowed as freely as champagne and mingled with cheers, prayers, and thank yous to team captain Willie Stargell. Players also accepted the congratulations of President Carter, who was bustled into the crowded dressing room accompanied by a horde of Secret Service men.
  • Dave Parker shouted: Who says we don't have a family now? C Ed Ott joined in. Who doubts "the family" now? Is there anybody in this room who doesn't believe we have a family now?
    The reference was to an article in a Baltimore newspaper that suggested the whole "family" thing was "a bad joke" and a "cheap grandstand play." Any team that tries to compare itself to a family is straining for attention. It's artificial. It's a gimmick.
  • Tanner would make a sad journey to next day to bury his mother Anne, who died Sunday morning before Game 5. P John Candelaria commented: You have to give him credit. I don't know if I could have come to the park if my mother had died. Chuck said he thought his mother would wish him to remain with the club until the end of the Series. She knew it was my life. ... I can manage as long as I want to. That's what I want to do. What else would I do? Managng is a tremendous satisfaction. Every manager wants to get the most out of his players, and I think I have done that every year. Even in years when we have finished fourth or fifth, we have come down the stretch strong, and that's a good sign. The Pirate manager didn't remember what the President said to him but had no trouble describing his own feelings. This is the peak. The top. The place where everybody who has ever played baseball wants to be. On Stargell: The man's a sure Hall of Famer, and he went out there and smoked a good pitch over the wall.
    Tanner told a story about his first conversation with Willie when he became manager in 1977. Will, you've always batted fourth here, I know. I'm going to put four guys in front of you who can run and hit you fifth. "Chuck, I could kiss you," Stargell said. "Hey, it doesn't matter where I hit." In spring training last March when the players were dragging from Tanner's drills, Willie brought the clubhouse to utter silence when he announced in a menacing bass voice: We all hate you, Tanner. There was a chilling pause. But we're going to love you in October.
  • Holding a bottle of California Chardonnay, Stargell confessed to being speechless over his accomplishments. I don't really know how I feel. When it hits me, I'll probably feel great. There are no words to say what this team means to me. I started this family thing because it was something we felt typified our club. There is a family closeness on this team that is unique. It wasn't meant to be sassy or fancy. Writers and other people who have been around other clubhouses say it isn't that way elsewhere. And we don't put on airs. We are that way. ... I know they have to give the MVP award to one person, but I wish I could give it to everybody on the team. I can't begin to tell you how much the MVP award means to me. Unfortunately, there are no more stars to give out.
  • Nicosia: Now it's our turn to do some talking. All we kept hearing about from the time we got to the Series was how good Baltimore's pitching was. Well, we have the best pitching staff in baseball. I said it in the playoffs, and I say it here. Nobody wanted to hear about anything except Rick Dempsey and their pitchers. We were supposedly defeated before we even got here. We didn't belong here, but we showed them.
  • Bill Robinson asked, Who's the MVP? Stargell? Oh good. He's something. He deserves it. Foli joined in. We couldn't have come close without him. He picked us up both on and off the field.
Orioles Clubhouse
  • The Orioles drank the champagne that had been waiting for them and received the congratulations of President Carter.
  • Weaver: We have the American League championship, anyway, which is better than having it in New York or Massachuseets. I'd love to say World Champions. ... We had our shots and played good baseball. Yes, I feel empty. We won 108 games this season, and we needed to win 109. He was disappointed but not surprised by what Stargell did. Tell you a story. In 1959, I'm managing in the Arizona Instructional League, and I got a kid pitcher named Johnny Ellen. Stargell is out there with the Pirates rookie team. So one day, Ellen throws Stargell a low breaking ball, and Willie bangs it off the right field wall for a double. I tell Ellen, "No, no. You got to get the ball up and away." So next time, Ellen gets a fast ball about chest high way outside, and Willie hits it off the left field wall for a double. Finally I say, "No, I mean really high, up around his eyes." He puts a pitch right up there, and Willie hits it out of the ball park. Then the kid comes in and says to me, "Is that high enough for you?" On Tekulve: I don't see how anybody in that other league hits the guy.
  • McGregor: I'm not going to say anything bad about our ballclub. We had a fantastic season. I am not going to pout about losing tonight. He then joined Stoddard and Bumbry in hoisting a glass of champagne and added, I think I'm going to party some myself. Scott had nothing but praise for the Series MVP. Mr. Stargell is an amazing old man. You have to tip our hats to him. I threw down to him on the home run ball when I was trying to get up.
  • DeCinces sat quietly before his locker. We hit some balls at their people when we had runners in scoring position, and they caught them every time. No one thing turned this series around. They just went out and beat us. ... I know 24 other teams that would like to be where we are.
  • Singleton: Pittsburgh had a very tough defense, and we were just in one of those hitting slumps. We're a good ballclub, but your luck can run bad for several weeks.
  • Dempsey: How can I explain it? It looks like we don't have the experience on the club to get us the runs we needed in the last three games. We needed a little more punch, and we didn't get it. We didn't lose to a slouch team. They just outplayed us and outhit us. When you come down to it, the better team won. We didn't deserve to win. We threw our best at them, but we didn't score runs, and we deserved to lose.
The attendance totaled 367,597 (average of 52,514).
  • Each Pirate earned $28,264.
  • The Orioles took home $22,114 apiece.

The day after the World Series, the scheduled parade in Baltimore went on as scheduled.

  • Malcolm Moran wrote in the New York Times: The sun came up here, as hoped, at 7:19 on the morning after. The victory parade started, as planned, shortly after 11:30. Earl Weaver, the manager of the Baltimore Orioles, reminded everyone that his team had won more games than any other team in baseball this season. And for a little while, thousands of people chose not to remember that the Orioles had lost the last one.
  • An estimated 125,000 fans filled the downtown area despite the outcome.
  • "It's the greatest parade I've ever seen," said Mayor William Donald Schaefer. "Never seen anything like it."
  • At City Hall, Rick Dempsey sang "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." Wild Bill Hagy led the O-R-I-O-L-E-S cheer that turned him into a local legend. And the crowd chanted "Ed-die, Ed-die" for their cleanup hitter, who batted .154 during the Series.
  • A billboard near Memorial Stadium summarized the day: "We love you, Birds."

Pittsburgh held its celebration two days after Game 7.

  • There was no parade, no convertibles, no ticker tape, no marching bands.
  • Instead, the noon celebration, attended by an estimated 25,000 gold-and-black clad fans who crowded into the Market Square area downtown, was exactly what its planners said it would be: an old-fashioned "Fam-A-Lee Reunion."
  • With their wives and children, 21 Pirate players, manager Tanner, two coaches, and a host of front-office personnel crowded with local civic leaders onto a small stage on which they sang and danced to their disco theme song "We Are Family."
  • They gave the usual speeches, led cheers, and applauded the crowd that was honoring them.
  • Stargell told the throng: The greatest thing any of us can do this winter during our travels is introduce ourselves to people and say proudly we are from the city that has nothing but champions. We feel you people are as responsible for our win as we are. This is a great city with great people. I can't think of a place I'd rather bring my kids up in than here.

Stargell Greets the Throng

Culmination of Super Bowl and World Series championship year for Pittsburgh

References: The World Series, David S. Neft & Richard M. Cohen (1990)
The Seventh Game, Barry Levenson (2004)
"Winning It for 'The Family,'" John Perrotto, Memories and Dreams,
Baseball Hall of Fame, Winter 2014

Next in this series: 1982: Milwaukee @ St. Louis