Opening Day Countdown: The 1980 Brewers


We’re just 80 days away from Opening Day, it’s so close I can already smell hotdogs with mustard and relish. To commerate being one step closer to that joyous day we are going to look back at the 1980 Brewers today.

The ‘80s were a good time for the Brewers (after all ’82 was the best year in Franchise history) and 1980 was part of that build up to ’82. The Brewers finished third with a record of 86-76, putting them behind the Yankees and the Orioles. Cecil Cooper, Ben Ogilivie and Robin Yount all had batting averages over .290 and slugging over 500.

Looking back it was really their offense that kept them strong, don’t get me wrong Bill Castro was amazing, but he only a relief pitcher. Only two of the Brew Crew’s starting pitchers were better than average. Those two being Moose Haas and Larry Sorensen, which probably came as a surprise to most watching that year Mike Caldwell wasn’t up there that year.

After having, arguably, his greatest year in 1978, a 22-9 record with a 2.36 ERA in 293.1 winnings (I’m not even sure that’d be allowed for today’s pitchers), Caldwell was too good to be true. And the next five years after ’78 were proof, including 1980. Caldwell went 13-11 posting a 4.03 ERA in 225.1 IP. Compared to ’78 those numbers were horrid (and that’s putting it in PG terms).

1980 was part of a solid 5 years the Brewers had, going from ’78 until ’82. 1980 wasn’t bad by any means, after all finishing third in a division where the Orioles finished second with 100 wins and the Yankees won with 103 wins is nothing to be upset about and that is why the 1980 Brewers are part of our Opening Day Countdown