Morgan's hit wins World Series for Reds
The night before, Carlton Fisk waved his way into history, willing his 12th-inning homer fair down the left-field line at Fenway Park.
But on this night, Joe Morgan's hit – which traveled about half as far but had just as much power – meant the ultimate prize for the Cincinnati Reds.
Morgan's two-out, ninth-inning bloop single drove in Ken Griffey to give the Reds a 4-3 lead over the Red Sox in Game 7 of the World Series on Oct. 22, 1975. The estimated 75 million TV viewers then watched as Will McEnaney retired Boston in order in the bottom of the ninth, preserving the victory for Cincinnati.
For Morgan, it was the latest in a long line of clutch hits that eventually landed the hard-working second baseman in the Hall of Fame.
Fisk, who himself was elected to the Hall in 2000, had delivered one of baseball's most memorable home runs Oct. 21, sending this dramatic World Series to a seventh and final game.
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In Game 7, Boston capitalized on that momentum by taking a 3-0 lead in the third inning on a run-scoring single by Carl Yastrzemski and bases-loaded walks to Rico Petrocelli and Dwight Evans.
But Tony Perez's home run in the sixth inning cut the Red Sox's lead to 3-2, and Pete Rose's single in the seventh scored Griffey to tie the score at three – setting up Morgan's heroics in the ninth.
In all, five future Hall of Famers (Morgan, Perez, Johnny Bench, Yastrzemski and Fisk) played in that game. And Hall of Famer Sparky Anderson managed the Reds.
A ticket from Game 7 is preserved in the archives at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
Craig Muder is director of communications for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.