The 1982 American League Championship Series was played between the Milwaukee Brewers and the California Angels from October 5 to 10, 1982. Milwaukee won the series three games to two to advance to the franchise’s first World Series, where they would lose to the St. Louis Cardinals, four games to three. The 1982 ALCS was marked by a dramatic comeback by the Brewers, who lost the first two games of the series and were trailing late in the final game.
The series was noteworthy as being the first to feature a matchup between two "expansion" teams (i.e., franchises not included among the sixteen operating in the major leagues for most of the first half of the twentieth century), and for featuring two teams that had never before won a pennant.
Milwaukee won the series, 3–2.
Tuesday, October 5, 1982, at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, California
The Angels jumped to a 1–0 lead in the first when Brian Downing scored an unearned run on a sacrifice fly by Don Baylor. Milwaukee came back to take a 3–1 lead with a two-run homer by Gorman Thomas in the second and a run scored by Paul Molitor on a groundout in the third. But the Angels took back the lead for good in their half of the third with a four-run rally highlighted by Baylor’s two-run triple. Baylor capped off a five-RBI game with a two-run single in the fourth, and the Angels got another run in the fifth when eventual series MVP Fred Lynn homered. California starter Tommy John, who lent his name to the famous surgical procedure, settled down after the third and gave the Brewers little over the final six innings on his way to a complete-game victory.
Wednesday, October 6, 1982, at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, California
California got off to a 4–0 lead in Game 2 and never looked back. The Angels got two in the second on an RBI single from Tim Foli and a squeeze bunt by Bob Boone. California’s Reggie Jackson homered in the third to make it 3–0, and Boone plated the Angels’ fourth run with a sacrifice fly in the fourth. The Brewers made a game of it in the fifth on Paul Molitor’s two-run inside-the-park homer, but could get no closer the rest of the way against the strong pitching of Bruce Kison. Those complete-game efforts helped produce the snappy 2:06 time of game. California was now up 2–0 in the series and needed only one more win for the franchise’s first trip to the World Series.
Friday, October 8, 1982, at County Stadium in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The series moved to Milwaukee and produced the Brewers’ first win. Milwaukee opened the scoring in the fourth with three runs on an RBI double by Cecil Cooper, who would eventually get the series-winning hit, and sacrifice flies by Gorman Thomas and Don Money. Paul Molitor got two more runs for Milwaukee with a seventh-inning homer, this one over the fence. Brewers starter Don Sutton pitched strongly for the first seven innings but tired in the eighth, yielding three runs on a Bob Boone homer and doubles by Fred Lynn and Don Baylor. Pete Ladd came out of the Milwaukee bullpen to get the final four outs for the save.
Saturday, October 9, 1982, at County Stadium in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The Brewers again staved off elimination and evened the series in a rather sloppy but high-scoring Game 4. The teams combined for five errors to allow three unearned runs. Milwaukee built a 6–0 lead with three-run rallies in the second and fourth. The Brewers got a lot of help from two California errors and three wild pitches by Angels starter Tommy John, who took the loss. The teams traded runs in the sixth: Fred Lynn doubled home Reggie Jackson for the Angels, and Jim Gantner singled home Mark Brouhard for the Brewers. Brouhard, who only appeared in 40 regular season games, was subbing for Ben Oglivie. Brouhard contributed 3 hits, 4 runs and 3 RBI's in this, the only postseason appearance of his career. California rallied for four runs in the eighth on a grand slam by Don Baylor to cut Milwaukee’s lead to 7–5. But the Brewers bounced back with a two-run homer by Brouhard in the bottom of the inning to put the game away and level the series 2–2.
Sunday, October 10, 1982, at County Stadium in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Game 5 proved to be the most dramatic of the series. The Angels got a quick 1–0 lead in the first on a double by Brian Downing and a single by Fred Lynn. But Milwaukee tied the game in the bottom of the inning when Paul Molitor doubled and eventually came home on a sacrifice fly by Ted Simmons. The Angels made it 2–1 in the third on an RBI single from Fred Lynn, and stretched the lead to 3–1 in the fourth on a run-scoring single from Bob Boone. Milwaukee cut the lead to 3–2 in the bottom of the fourth on Ben Oglivie’s homer. In the 5th inning, the Angels nearly threatened again, until Reggie Jackson was thrown out trying to reach third on a Fred Lynn single. The score remained unchanged until the bottom of the seventh, when disaster struck the Angels. Milwaukee loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. Cecil Cooper then cracked the series-winning hit, a two-run single that put the Brewers ahead 4–3. The Milwaukee bullpen kept the Angels off the board in the final two innings, helped by a spectacular catch by reserve outfielder Marshall Edwards, robbing Don Baylor of extra bases. The Angels threatened again in the 9th with a runner on second, and Rod Carew at the plate. Pete Ladd got Carew to ground out to Robin Yount, and the Brewers took home the franchise’s first American League pennant.
1982 ALCS (3–2): Milwaukee Brewers over California Angels