Corpus Christi Caller - July 31, 1980

Phillies storm back to drop Astros, 6-4


By The Associated Press


PHILADELPHIA – Houston Manager Bill Virdon felt there were two keys to the Astros’ 6-4 loss to the Phillies Wednesday night.


He said the first was a call at the plate in the Phillies' four-run fifth in which catcher Alan Ashby argued that he tagged Pete Rose at the plate, but the runner was called safe and the Phillies went ahead 4-3.


Virdon admitted that he couldn't see whether Rose was out or safe but added, “I could just go by Alan's (Ashby) reaction. He doesn't argue very much.”


The second thing Virdon cited was Houston starter Nolan Ryan's tendency to get behind the hitters, especially in the Phillies' four-run fifth.


Winning pitcher Dick Ruthven, 10-7, opened the inning with a double off Ryan, 5-8. One out later, Rose walked. Ryan retired Bake McBride, who had stroked seven consecutive hits over the last two games, but walked Mike Schmidt to load the bases. Keith Moreland then ripped a single to right, scoring Ruthven and Rose and sending the Phillies ahead.


Moreland took second on the throw to the plate and scored behind Schmidt when Garry Maddox singled to left.


The Astros had taken a 2-0 lead in the fourth on a two-run single by Craig Reynolds.


After the Phillies tied it in the bottom of the inning, Houston went ahead in the fifth when Jeff Leonard singled, went to third on Ruthven's wild pickoff attempt and scored on Joe Morgan's single.