1993 World Series
The 1993 World Series was the second Series in a row with games played in Canada as well as the second Series to be won by a Canadian team.
It pitted the defending champion Toronto Blue Jays of the American League against the National League champion Philadelphia Phillies. With Toronto ahead three games to two in the Series, Joe Carter hit a game-winning three-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 6 to win the series for Toronto, its second consecutive championship (the first repeaters since the 1977–78 Yankees). This was only the second Series concluded by such a home run (the first was in the 1960 World Series on a Bill Mazeroski home run for the Pittsburgh Pirates), and the first such occasion where a come-from-behind walk-off home run won a World Series.
This was the fourth World Series to be played entirely on artificial turf, following those in 1980, 1985, and 1987, and the last to be played on turf until 2008. As of 2009, only three teams still play on turf, and all are in the American League: the Blue Jays, the Minnesota Twins, and the Tampa Bay Rays. That number will shrink to two starting in 2010 when the Twins move to Target Field.
Larry Andersen was the only member of the 1993 Phillies to also play for them in the 1983 World Series although Darren Daulton was a late season call-up in 1983, but only served as the bullpen catcher in the World Series. Fittingly, in Daulton's first ever MLB game, he was a catcher for Larry Andersen.
After shocking the baseball world by defeating the perennial National League champion Atlanta Braves in the previous Series, the Toronto Blue Jays returned to defend their "Canadian Classic" title against the Philadelphia Phillies (who had finished last in '92). The new National League champions had struggled throughout the entire season (due to injuries), but held on the defeat the Braves as well in six playoff games for a ticket across the border. Philadelphia jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first inning of Game 1and continued with a 4-3 advantage going in the fifth. John Olerud managed to seize the lead (in the sixth) for the home team with bomb of his own following a tying blast by Devon White in the fifth. Toronto continued their comeback (in the seventh) with three more runs including a two run double by Roberto Alomar that sealed the 8-5 victory. In Game 2, Jim Eisenreich hammered a three run homer off Dave Stewart in the Phillies' five run third and Lenny Dykstra made two highlight catches while crashing into the centerfield wall on both occasions. In the end, the Blue Jays were unable to rally as they had in the first outing and fell 6-4 after Dykstra drilled a bases-empty homer in the seventh.
As the Series shifted to the City of Brotherly Love Toronto manager Cito Gaston shook things up after deciding to send the American League batting champion, first baseman John Olerud, to the bench (against lefthander Danny Jackson) and replace him with Paul Molitor. The controversial move represented a way around the no designated-hitter rule that was in effect at the National League's ballpark and the "fake DH" filled the gap with a two run triple in the first inning and a solo homer in the third. Alomar and Tony Fernandez also followed suite with two, two RBI blasts of their own for the 10-3 triumph that put the Bluebirds ahead two games to one.
Game 4 was by far the most memorable outing of the Series and set three records in a single game including the longest World Series game ever (four hours, fourteen minutes), most runs by both clubs (twenty-nine) and most runs scored by a losing team (fourteen). Philadelphia's Milt Thompson (five RBIs) got the ball rolling with a three run triple in the first inning and Dykstra (four RBIs) added two homers for an astonishing 14-9 lead going into the seventh. The Jays, who's batting order featured the league's 1-2-3 hitters (Olerud, Molitor and Alomar) landed a six run rally in the eighth which was capped by Henderson's two run single and White's two run triple. After both teams combined for thirty-one hits and fourteen bases on balls, the defending champions emerged 15-14 winners. The scoring derby though record-setting was typical due to the poor pitching that had become par on both sides throughout the Series. (Toronto's rotation finished with a horrendous 5.77 ERA and the Phillies bested them with a pathetic 7.57 earned-run-average.)
Curt Schilling was given the dubious task of putting Philly back in race after a three game deficit and the National's ace rose to the challenge with a beautiful five hitter that kept his team alive with a 2-0 victory. Unfortunately the contest was headed back indoors as both teams headed back to "The Great White North". Molitor (who finished .500 and won the MVP) tripled home a run in Toronto's three run first that set the pace for Game 6. He added a bases-empty homer in the fifth that moved the Jays ahead 5-1. The advantage stood in Philadelphia's favor as they protected a 6-5 decision going into the ninth. Mitch Williams was given the call from the Phillies bullpen and proceeded to walk the first batter he faced (Rickey Henderson) on four pitches. White flied out to left field, but Molitor (the DH) followed with a clutch single to center. Joe Carter (with one-hundred twenty-one RBIs and eight-hundred ninety-three in eight years) completed the sequence (with a 2-2 count) and sent a long bomb over the left-field fence for the game and title. The 8-6 victory made the Canadian-based club the first team since the Yankees of 1977-78 to repeat and finally gave levity to the term "World Champions".