Fitzpatrick: 1977 Phillies won 101 games, but took just 10 minutes to collapse

From Frank Fitzpatrick at the Philadelphia Inquirer on June 28, 2019:

It’s too bad the 1977 Phillies have become a mere footnote in franchise history, a dynamic team that invigorated but ultimately disappointed a city in the midst of that long, dark passage from the 1950 Whiz Kids to 1980’s breakthrough world championship.

Forty-two summers later, if that 101-win team is remembered at all, it’s because of how swiftly and surprisingly it disintegrated. On Oct. 7, 1977, Black Friday, the brightest of Phillies seasons morphed into one more indelible Philadelphia sports disaster.

With two outs in the ninth inning of Game 3 of the National League Championship Series, on a gorgeous afternoon at Veterans Stadium, in front of 63,719 raucous fans, a 5-3 Phillies lead was wiped out by a machine-gun burst of misfortune.

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Originally published: July 9, 2019. Last Updated: July 9, 2019.