Before 1980, the Philadelphia Phillies had never won a World Series, so you can imagine the emotional release after Tug McGraw struck out Willie Wilson for the final out in Game 6 to clinch it. I still remember local law enforcement encircling the field at Veterans Stadium with German Shepherd puppy dawgs — taser guns of the period — to help keep the masses away from Bake McBride's Afro and Steve Carlton's chi.
But the fans didn't mellow the next day when the Fighting City of Philadelphia hosted a parade that circulated through the town until reaching J.F.K. Stadium for a rally. Enrico from The 700 Level said he stumbled across a YouTube of the PHL17 broadcast of the parade and it is a gem.
• Toilet paper everywhere.
• Larry Bowa's cowboy hat.
• A dour-looking Pete Rose (and his hair helmet)
• Fans breaking through barriers and charging after parade floats — which were players on flatbed trucks. The 1980 Phillies were ballplayers, rock stars, astronauts and folk heroes all rolled into one.
• Enough Brotherly Love to choke a police horse:
"It's as if this 1980 World's championship has purged the city of all past wrongs" — broadcaster Dan Baker on S. Broad Street.
Well......... we'll see about that!
An unexpected gem: An interview with umpire Eric Gregg, a Philly native who did not work the Series but admitted to being... :
"... one of the frustrated fans who followed the Phillies for several years. Now I'm a big-league umpire — and I'm a National League fan — but still, it was a dream come true for the Phillies fans."
You never see umpires interviewed today unless it's for a blown call, usually.
The broadcast is kind of discombobulated and, as Enrico says, it makes you appreciate the production values of contemporary TV. But nostalgia makes it fun to visit.
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- Sports & Recreation
- Arts & Entertainment
- Philadelphia Phillies
- World Series
- Willie Wilson