The Brewers' magic number in the American League East was any combination of Brewer wins and Oriole losses adding up to two. The Brewers played Baltimore. The Brewers tagged Jim Palmer and three relief pitchers, two named Martinez, for ten runs in support of Don Sutton. Thus ended a tight pennant race, in which the magic number had stayed at two for several days. I had an opportunity to watch the Brewers play at Tiger Stadium on September 13. Gorman Thomas hit a home run in the top of the eleventh. Rollie Fingers was not available as closer, and Lance Parrish hit one with one on in the bottom of the eleventh. The ball landed not too far from where we were watching.
This year, an odd season has just ended. The team lost several key players to injuries early on, then the late-inning relievers regularly surrendered leads, and after being swept by the Reds and the Phillies, management started dealing players away. Despite all those troubles, the replacement players called up from Nashville performed well, the relievers found their stuff, and there was an improbable second-wildcard playoff run that ended only on the weekend, and the Brewers achieved a winning record.
The Pittsburgh Pirates, who looked so promising early in the season, ended, again, with a losing record.