Though he kept Phillies fans on edge, closer Tug McGraw had a knack for coming through when it mattered most. In Game 5 of the 1980 World Series, he loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth with a slim 3-2 lead before uncorking a fastball past Jose Cardenal to earn the win. Two days later, he overpowered Willie Wilson for the final out in Game 6 to finish off the Royals and give the city of Philadelphia its first baseball championship after 97 years of waiting.
2 of 10Manny Millan/SI
The Yankees sprung out to a 2-0 series lead against the Dodgers in 1981 and seemed primed to beat Los Angeles in the World Series for the third time in the past five seasons. Then, Pedro Guerrero took over. He smacked a two-run double to send Los Angeles to a comeback Game 3 win before connecting with a game-tying home run in Game 5 as the Dodgers stormed from behind to take a 3-2 series lead into Game 6. That was Guerrero's best game yet -- he battered New York pitchers for a two-run triple, a two-RBI single and a solo home run in L.A.'s 9-2 victory.
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With the Series tied entering Game 3, McGee broke a scoreless tie in the fifth inning by hitting a three-run homer. He added a second home run in the seventh and saved the day by robbing Milwaukee's Gorman Thomas of a home run in the ninth. The Redbirds went on to win the Series, their first title since 1967.
4 of 10Ronald C. Modra/SI
Baltimore was in danger of falling behind two games to none when Rick Dempsey stepped to the plate in the bottom of the fifth of Game 2. The journeyman catcher whacked a go-ahead double, kick-starting the Orioles to a 4-1 victory. Dempsey scored the tying run in Game 3 and added a home run in Game 5, capturing MVP honors as Baltimore defeated Philadelphia four games to one.
5 of 10John Iacono/SI
A 19-game winner during the regular season, Tigers' pitcher Jack Morris continued to baffle opponents during the 1984 World Series. He retired the final nine Padres hitters to complete his Game 1 victory, and went the distance again in Game 4, allowing a mere five hits. Morris recorded an ERA of 2.00 over his 18 innings pitched as the Tigers cruised to a 4-1 series win.
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After a blown call at first base and missed pop-up by Cardinals' catcher Darrell Porter, Kansas City loaded the bases in the ninth inning of Game 6 of the 1985 Fall Classic. St. Louis was just two outs away from winning the series when Royals' seldom-used pinch-hitter Dane Iorg slapped a single to right, plating Onix Concepcion and Jim Sundberg to give Kansas City a thrilling 2-1 walk-off win. The inspired Royals rolled to an 11-0 victory in Game 7.
7 of 10Ronald C. Modra/SI
The Mets were down to their final out in the bottom of the 10th of Game 6 when back-to-back singles gave the team life against the Boston Red Sox. That brought up Ray Knight, who knocked an 0-2 Calvin Schiraldi offering into center to cut the lead to 5-4 and keep New York's hopes alive. Knight would scamper home to win the game on Bill Buckner's notorious error, and then go on to slam a solo home run in Game 7 to hand the Mets their first lead of the contest. They never relinquished it, and Knight was later named the World Series MVP.
8 of 10John Iacono/SI
Twins' pitcher Frank Viola was scheduled to be the best man at his brother's wedding on Oct. 17, 1987, but had to cancel after finding out that Game 1 of the World Series fell on the same day. It was a good thing he did, as Viola hurled eight innings of one-run ball during a 10-1 Minnesota victory over St. Louis. He lost Game 4 but toed the rubber again in Game 7, when, despite a shaky start, he pitched another eight-inning masterpiece as the Twins won their first title.
9 of 10Heinz Kluetmeier/SI
Bothered by lingering knee and hamstring injuries, the Dodgers' Gibson was not expected to play in Game 1. He watched as the heavily-favored Athletics jumped out to a 4-3 lead heading into the 9th inning, bringing in Dennis Eckersley to close the door on L.A. With one on and two outs, manager Tommy Lasorda summoned a hobbled Gibson to pinch-hit. With a 3-2 count, Eckersley unleashed a backdoor slider, which Gibson launched into the right-field bleachers to give the Dodgers a dramatic, improbable, come-from-behind victory.
10 of 10John Iacono/SI
Postponed by 10 days because of the famous Loma Prieta earthquake, Game 3 of the 1989 World Series took place with the A's leading the Giants two games to none. Oakland would expand its lead behind the strength of Dave Henderson, who smashed two home runs, a double and added four RBIs in a 13-7 victory. Hendu, who hit .308 for the series, chipped in a hit and two runs in the A's Game 4 triumph as well, completing the sweep of their in-state rivals and winning their first Series in 15 years.
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