The Detroit Tigers won the 1984 World Series, taking the title over the San Diego Padres, four games to one.
The 1984 Detroit Tigers were an absolute juggernaut, reeling off eight straight wins to begin the season and posting a 35-5 record through 40 games. They all but salted away the American League East division crown halfway through May!
In the end, the Tigers finished at 104-58, a full 15 games ahead of the second-place Toronto Blue Jays. In October, Detroit swept the Kansas City Royals, three games to none, in the American League Championship Series.
Meanwhile, the San Diego Padres rode Tony Gwynn’s breakout season to a surprise division title in the National League West. They met the upstart Chicago Cubs in the National League Championship Series, coming back from an 0-2 deficit to win the N.L. pennant.
That set up an anticlimactic Fall Classic, with Sparky Anderson’s Tigers having little trouble with Dick Williams’ Padres.
Here is a game-by-game breakdown of the 1984 World Series:
Game 1: Tigers 3, Padres 2
In a bit of foreshadowing of his later-career heroics, Detroit ace Jack Morris went the distance in Game 1, allowing two runs and striking out nine as the visiting Tigers nabbed a close win. Larry Herndon supplied the Detroit firepower, connecting on a two-run home run in the fifth inning.
Game 2: Padres 5, Tigers 3
The Padres gave their hometown faithful some hope in Game 2, chipping away at the 3-0 lead Detroit built in the top of the first inning, chasing starter Ed Whitson in the process. Kurt Bevacqua hit a three-run dinger in the fifth, which put San Diego ahead for good. With three games looming in Detroit, Padres fans knew their team needed to win just one in order to return home with a shot at the title.
Game 3: Tigers 5, Padres 2
At home for the first World Series game in Detroit since 1968, the Tigers scored four runs in the bottom of the second inning and never looked back. Closer Willie Hernandez pitched the final 2 1/3 innings, picking up his first save of the Fall Classic.
Game 4: Tigers 4, Padres 2
Up two games to one, the Tigers kept the pedal to the metal in Game 4, scoring two runs in each of the first and third inning, courtesy of two two-run home runs off the bat of future Hall of Famer Alan Trammell. Morris threw another complete-game gem.
Game 5: Tigers 8, Padres 4
With blood in the water, the Tigers kept up their early-strike ways in Game 5, collecting three first-inning runs, two thanks to a two-run shot by Kirk Gibson. The Padres fought back to tie the game in the fourth, but the Tigers would score one each in the fifth and seventh.
San Diego cut the lead to one with a Kurt Bevacqua home run in the top of the eighth, but Detroit answered in the bottom of the frame in the form of a three-run longball from Gibson.
Willie Hernandez — who gave up that homer to Bevacqua — allowed a one-out single to Bruce Bochy in the top of the ninth but nailed down his second save by retiring Garry Templeton, Alan Wiggins, and Tony Gwynn.
The Detroit Tigers were world champions!
Through 2021, the Padres have yet to win a World Series.
1984 World Series MVPs
Alan Trammell was named World Series MVP on the strength of his batting line: 2 home runs, 6 runs batted in, .450 batting average, 9 hits, 1 double, 5 runs scored.