Elyria Chronicle-Telegram - October 12, 1980
Enraged "Bull" keeps Phils Alive In Playoffs
By The United Press International
HOUSTON (UPI) - Philadelphia's prize "bull," Greg Luzinski, enraged at being pulled from the starting lineup, delivered a pinch-hit run-scoring double to trigger a two-run 10th inning Saturday that gave the Phillies a 5-3 victory over the Houston Astros and set up a showdown fifth game for the National League pennant.
The Phillies, seeking their first pennant since 1950, will pitch either rookie Marty Bystrom or right-hander Dick Ruthven Sunday night while the Astros, looking for the first pennant in their 19-year history, will counter with right-hander Nolan Ryan.
The Phillies began their winning outburst in the 10th on a one-out single by Pete Rose off losing reliever Joe Sambito. After Mike Schmidt lined out to left, the burly Luzinski batted for Bake McBride and doubled into the left-field corner.
The relay throw to the plate appeared to have Rose beaten but catcher Bruce Bochy, a late-inning replacement for injured Luis Pujols, juggled the ball and Rose crashed into him to score the tie-breaking run. Manny Trillo then followed with a double to left-center to knock in Luzinski with an insurance run and reliever Tug McGraw protected the lead by setting the Astros down in the 10th.
The Astros, who battled back from adversity all season, rallied for a run in the ninth off winner Warren Brusstar to tie it 3-3, forcing the third straight extra-inning game of the playoffs. Rafael Landestoy led off the ninth with a walk, was sacrificed to second by Sambito and scored on Terry Puhl's single to right.
Held to only five hits by Vern Ruhle and scoreless for 18 1-3 innings, the Phillies finally got their act together in the eighth by putting together four straight singles, including run-scoring hits by Rose and Mike Schmidt and a sacrifice fly by Trillo to overcome their early frustration.
The Phillies' victory was ensured, however, by a classic bonehead running play by Houston rookie Gary Woods in the sixth inning. Woods was called out on an appeal play for leaving the base too soon after he had apparently scored Houston's third run on a fly to right by Pujols.
That run the Astros didn't get proved to be decisive when the Phillies got things going in the eighth. Greg Gross, pinch hitting for starter Steve Carlton, opened the inning with a single and rookie Lonnie Smith followed with another single to left. Rose then bounced a single past second baseman Joe Morgan into right field to score Gross, and Ruble was replaced by Dave Smith. Schmidt then beat out an infield hit behind second base as Smith scored and Astros manager Bill Virdon then called upon his ace reliever, Sambito
Sambito struck out McBride but Trillo followed with a line drive to right field which right fielder Jeff Leonard grabbed, at his shoetops on the run. Rose, who was on third base, tagged and scored on the play but Schmidt went down to second base and a small controversy developed when Bochy threw to first base for an inning-ending double play.
The Astros argued that Rose's run should not have counted since the double play ended the inning. However, it was not a continuation double play, according to plate umpire Doug Harvey, since Leonard's throw had first gone home to try to get Rose. If Leonard had thrown to first base right away, the run would not have counted.
That controversy, however, was nothing compared to the one in the fourth which resulted from a controversial double play that took the Phillies out of a potential big inning.
With the two teams scoreless, one of the most controversial moments in post-season playoff history occurred after McBride and Trillo led off the Phillies' fourth with successive singles and Garry Maddox then hit a soft, broken-bat line drive which Ruhle gloved near his left foot. Harvey ruled it a trap and Ruhle threw to first base for an out as the runners advanced. However, first base umpire Ed Vargo said Ruhle did catch the ball and therefore it was a double play. As Philadelphia manager Dallas Green and his players raced out to protest the call, Astros first baseman Art Howe ran to second base and tagged the bag as umpire Jerry Crawford signaled an out to complete what Houston claimed was a triple play.
Now all bedlam broke loose.
The Philies argued vehemently that Harvey's original decision should stand but third base umpire Bob Engel supported Vargo's claim that Ruhle did catch the ball. Harvey, admitting he was screened from the play and did not see it clearly, allowed his colleagues to overrule him. But there was more discussion on whether to allow a triple play since time had been called when the argument started on the play at first.