Joe Morgan’s impact in his first postseason action with the Reds.
Entering Game 2 of the 1972 NLCS, the Reds were in a must-win situation. The National League East Champion Pittsburgh Pirates hammered the Reds taking the opener 5-1 at Three Rivers Stadium. Before the series shifted to Cincinnati, it was imperative the Reds capture one game in the Steel City in the best of five series.
The Redlegs wasted no time in Game 2, jumping all over Pirates starter Bob Moose. Pete Rose led off the game with a single to right and Joe Morgan followed suit as well sending Rose to third base while of course taking second base on the throw to third base. It was a classic Joe Morgan play.
A trio of doubles followed in quick succession from Bobby Tolan, Johnny Bench and Tony Perez before Moose was lifted without recording an out and the Reds leading 4-0. The Big Red Machine was rolling, but there was still work to be done.
After the Pirates cut the Cincinnati lead in half, the Reds came to the plate in the eighth inning leading just 4-2. However, Morgan was not about to let this victory escape the Cincinnati Reds. Following a Rose groundout, Morgan took Pittsburgh reliever Ramon Hernandez deep giving the Reds a 5-2 lead and helped seal a Cincinnati win.
In his postseason series debut, Joe Morgan would collect five hits in 19 at-bats while adding two home runs and three RBIs. Little Joe’s performance helped the Reds win their second NL pennant in three seasons as the Redlegs would plate two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning in the deciding Game 5 to rally for a 4-3 victory before moving on to face the Oakland A’s in the 1972 World Series.