Phillips was the umpire in charge on July 12, 1979, when Bill Veeck promoted Disco
Demolition Night at Comiskey Park, during which fans burned disco records in a huge
bonfire on the field between games of a doubleheader. The field became such a mess
that Phillips deemed it unplayable and forfeited the game to the Tigers. In 1982,
in another highly publicized decision, Phillips ejected Gaylord Perry for throwing
an illegal grease ball. Perry was suspended for ten days. A former Missouri Valley
Conference basketball referee, Phillips became their supervisor of basketball officials
after his umpiring career ended.
FROM THE BASEBALL CHRONOLOGY
»August 25, 1961:
In the Orioles 5–2 win over the Twins, O' Dave Phillips sets a major-league record for pinch hits. His swinging bunt down the 3B line is his 23rd hit, breaking the record set by the Giants Sam Leslie in 1932. Phillips is 23 for 63 this season.
»July 15, 1994:
In the first inning at Comiskey Park, Sox manager Gene Lamont accuses Indian slugger Albert Belle of using a corked bat, and umpire Dave Phillips confiscates the bat and stores it in the ump's dressing room. In a Mission Impossible caper revealed in 1999, the Indians Jason Grimsley crawls 100 feet along a ceiling, drops down into the dressing room, and exchanges Belle's bat for one of Paul Sorrento's. After the 3–2 Indian's win, the switch is discovered to the consternation of the umps and the White Sox. The Indians subsequently turn over one of Belle's bats and Belle is given a 10-day suspension, later reduced to seven games.