Ebbets Field

Ebbets Field was a Major League Baseball stadium in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn, New York. It is known mainly as the home of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team of the National League, from 1913 to 1957, but was also home to three National Football League teams in the 1920s. Ebbets Field was demolished in 1960 and replaced by apartment buildings.

Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field is located in New York City
Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field
Location within New York City
Ebbets Field is located in New York
Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field (New York)
Location55 Sullivan Place
Brooklyn, New York City, New York 11225
Coordinates40°39′54″N 73°57′29″W / 40.66500°N 73.95806°WCoordinates: 40°39′54″N 73°57′29″W / 40.66500°N 73.95806°W
OwnerBrooklyn Dodgers (1913–1956)
Marvin Kratter (1956–1957)
OperatorBrooklyn Dodgers
Capacity18,000 (1913)[1]
30,000 (1914–1923)[1]
26,000 (1924–1925)[1]
28,000 (1926–1931)[1]
32,000 (1932–1936)[1]
35,000 (1937–1945)[1]
34,219 (1946–1949)[1]
32,111 (1949–1954)[1]
31,902 (1955–1957)[1]
Field sizeLeft field: 348 ft
Left-center: 351 ft
Center field: 395 ft
Right-center: 344 ft
Right field: 297 ft
SurfaceGrass
Construction
Broke groundMarch 4, 1912[2]
OpenedApril 9, 1913
ClosedSeptember 24, 1957
DemolishedFebruary 23, 1960
Construction costUS$750,000[3][4]
($19 million in 2018 dollars[5])
ArchitectClarence Randall Van Buskirk
General contractorCastle Brothers, Inc.[6]
Tenants
Brooklyn Dodgers (MLB) (1913–1957)
New York Brickley Giants (NFL) (1921)
Brooklyn Lions (NFL) (1926)
Brooklyn Dodgers / Tigers (NFL) (1930–1944)
Brooklyn Tigers (AFL) (1936)
Brooklyn Dodgers (AAFC) (1946–1948)

History

Construction

Ray Caldwell pitching in the first game at Ebbets Field, April 5, 1913
Ray Caldwell pitching in the first exhibition game at Ebbets Field, April 5, 1913. The dirt walkway visible between the mound and the plate disappeared after the 1910s.[7]

Ebbets Field was bounded by Bedford Avenue on the east, Sullivan Place on the South, Cedar Street (renamed McKeever Place in 1932[8]) on the west, and Montgomery Street on the north. After locating the prospective new site to build a permanent stadium to replace the old, wooden Washington Park, Dodgers' owner Charles Ebbets acquired the property over several years, starting in 1908, by buying lots until he owned the entire block. The land included the site of a garbage dump called Pigtown, so named because of the pigs that once ate their fill there and the stench that filled the air. Even at the groundbreaking, the site was described as containing several old houses, shanties, goats, and tomato cans, and although the streets bordering the field were mapped, two of them had not been built yet.

Construction began on March 4, 1912,[2] and the cornerstone, a piece of Connecticut granite that held newspapers, pictures of baseball players, cards, telegrams, and almanacs, was laid on July 6, 1912. At the cornerstone-laying ceremony, Ebbets said that the ballpark was going to be ready for play on September 1, and that Brooklyn was going to win the National League pennant in 1913.[9]

Neither of Ebbets's predictions happened. On August 29, 1912, as the deadline drew near and it was obvious that the ballpark was not even close to being finished, it was announced that Ebbets had sold shares in the team to Stephen W. and Edward J. McKeever, who had built their fortune in contracting and were able to speed along the construction to make up for an iron workers' strike during the summer.[10] This turned out to be a sale of 50% of the team, which led to management troubles years later, but by early 1913, Pigtown had been transformed into Ebbets Field, where some of baseballs's greatest dramas took place.[11]

Opening

Miss Genevieve Ebbets, youngest daughter of Charley Ebbets, throws first ball at opening of Ebbets Field (baseball) LCCN2014692697
Charles Ebbets' daughter throws out the first pitch, at an exhibition game on April 5, 1913.

The first game played was an inter-league exhibition game against the New York Yankees on April 5, 1913, played before an overcapacity of 30,000 fans, with 5,000 more who had arrived but were not able to get in.[12] After a loss against the Yankees in another exhibition game on April 7 in front of about 1,000 fans on a very cold day,[13] the first game that counted was played on April 9 against the Philadelphia Phillies, with Brooklyn losing, 1-0.[14] When the park was opened, it was discovered that the flag, keys to the bleachers, and a press box had all been forgotten. The press box level was not added until 1929.[7] The seating area was initially a double deck from past third base, around home plate, and all the way down the right side. There was an open, concrete bleacher stand extending the rest of the way down the third base side to the outer wall, but no seating in left field or centerfield. The right field wall was fairly high due to the short foul line (around 300 feet) necessitated by the street immediately beyond it, but had no screen or scoreboard at first. The ballpark was built on a sloping piece of ground. The right field wall made up the difference, as the right field corner was above street level. The left field corner was below street level, and there was an incline or "terrace" running along the left field wall.

As with Boston's Fenway Park and Detroit's Tiger Stadium, two ballparks that opened one year earlier than Ebbets Field, the intimate configuration prompted some baseball writers to refer to Ebbets Field as a "cigar box" or a "bandbox."

Use

Ebbets Field was the scene of some early successes, as the Dodgers, also called the "Robins" after long-time manager Wilbert Robinson, won National League championships in 1916 and 1920. The seating area was expanded in the 1920s, a "boom" time for baseball when many ballparks were expanded. The double deck was extended from third base around the left field corner, across left field, and into center field, covering the terrace and allowing right-hand hitters to garner many more home runs. By the 1940s, a big scoreboard had been installed in right field, as well as a screen atop the high wall which made home runs to right field a tougher accomplishment. However, additional rows of seating across left field reduced that area by about 15 feet, to the delight of right-handed sluggers.

The park's first night game was played on June 15, 1938, drawing a crowd of 38,748. Johnny Vander Meer of the visiting Cincinnati Reds pitched his second consecutive no-hitter in that game, a feat that has never been duplicated in Major League Baseball. It was also in 1938 that Hilda Chester, one of the earlier sports "superfans," became a regular attendee when Larry MacPhail brought Ladies' Days to Ebbets Field, only charging women a ten-cent admission on those days.

After the early successes of the Dodgers, the team slid into hard times. Things continued that way for several decades, until new ownership first brought in promotional wizard MacPhail in 1938, and then, after MacPhail's wartime resignation, player development genius Branch Rickey in 1943. In addition to his well-known breaking of the color line by signing Jackie Robinson, Rickey's savvy with farm systems (as with his prior work for the St. Louis Cardinals) produced results that made the Brooklyn Dodgers "Bums" a perennial contender, which they continued to be for several decades.

The Dodgers won pennants in 1941 (under MacPhail), 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953, 1955 and 1956. They won the 1955 World Series, their only world title, and were within two games (in 1950) and a playoff heartbreak (in 1951) of winning five National League pennants in a row (1949–53) and matching the cross-town Yankees' achievement during that stretch. Ebbets Field also hosted the 1949 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.

Demise

Crowd at Ebbets Field
Ebbets left field corner in 1920 World Series, with temporary bleachers sitting on the "terrace".

The Dodgers found themselves victims of their own success soon thereafter. Ebbets Field never seated more than 35,000 people (the smallest park in the National League by seating capacity), and the constraints of the neighborhood made its expansion impossible. It had almost no automobile parking for Dodger fans who had moved east to suburban Long Island, though it was near a subway station. Walter O'Malley, who obtained majority ownership of the Dodgers in 1950, announced plans for a privately-owned domed stadium at the Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn (currently the site of Barclays Center), where a large market was being torn down. However, New York City Building Commissioner Robert Moses refused to help O'Malley secure the land, instead wanting the Dodgers to move to a city-owned stadium in Flushing Meadows in the borough of Queens (the future site of Shea Stadium and Citi Field). O'Malley refused to consider Moses' proposal, famously saying, "We are the Brooklyn Dodgers, not the Queens Dodgers!" As a result, O'Malley began to flirt publicly with Los Angeles, using a relocation threat as political leverage to win favor for a Brooklyn stadium. Ultimately, O'Malley and Moses could not come to agreement on a new location for the stadium, and the club moved west to Los Angeles after the 1957 season. During their last two years in Brooklyn, the Dodgers played several games each year in Jersey City, New Jersey's Roosevelt Stadium, a tactic by O'Malley to force a new stadium to be built.

In 1956, real estate developer Marvin Kratter bought Ebbets Field from O'Malley, leasing it back to him until the team left for Los Angeles after the 1957 season.

With the Dodgers leaving for Los Angeles, O'Malley urged Horace Stoneham, owner of the Dodgers' long-time crosstown rivals, the New York Giants, to also move west. Stoneham, who was having stadium difficulties of his own, agreed, and moved the Giants to San Francisco after the 1957 season. That meant lights out for Ebbets Field, which was demolished beginning on February 23, 1960. More than 35 years after the Dodgers left Brooklyn, in a case deciding the use of the Brooklyn Dodgers’ trademark, Constance Baker Motley, a federal judge in the Southern District of New York, called O'Malley's removal of the franchise from its historic home "one of the most notorious abandonments in the history of sports".[15]

According to The Greatest Ballpark Ever: Ebbets Field and the story of the Brooklyn Dodgers by Bob McGee, Saul Leisner was assigned to auction off Ebbets Field on April 20, 1960. Leisner began the auction at 11:15 am by climbing an eight-foot ladder and holding a gavel. Estimates were that over 500 people gathered around the marble rotunda. Locker room stools, benches, team banners, seats, bricks, bats, caps, team photos, balls, and a brownstone cornerstone of the famous shrine were included in the items for sale. Saul stated that it was the saddest day of his life. It was a difficult task for Saul, who had been a faithful fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers and was heartbroken when the team relocated.[16][17]

Subsequent use of site

Ebbets Field Apartments jeh
Ebbets Field Apartments in 2008

The Ebbets Field Apartments were built on the former Ebbets Field site, and were opened in 1962.[18] They were renamed the Jackie Robinson Apartments in 1972, the year Robinson died. Middle School 320, across McKeever Place, was renamed Jackie Robinson Intermediate School. In January 2014, the street sign that once stood at the corner of McKeever Place and Montgomery Street was sold at auction for $58,852.08.[19]

Legacy

Citi Field and Apple
Citi Field's exterior facade is influenced by Ebbets Field.

Ebbets Field was one of several historic major league ballparks demolished in the 1960s, but more mythology and nostalgia surround the stadium and its demise than possibly any other defunct ballpark.

A great deal of history happened at Ebbets Field during its 45 years. Of the many teams that uprooted in the 1950s and 1960s, the Dodgers have probably had the largest number of public laments over their fans' heartbreak over losing their team. Several decades later, Roger Kahn's acclaimed book The Boys of Summer and Frank Sinatra's song "There Used to Be a Ballpark" mourned the loss of places like Ebbets Field, and of the attendant youthful innocence of fans and players alike. The story of Ebbets Field and the Brooklyn Dodgers' move to Los Angeles were also chronicled by historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, figured into the plot of the film Field of Dreams, and were featured in an entire episode of Ken Burns' public-television documentary Baseball, as well as a 2007 HBO documentary called Brooklyn Dodgers: Ghosts of Flatbush.

In 2006, the Dodgers matched the years they played at Ebbets Field with their years in Dodger Stadium. The New York Mets' duration in Shea Stadium (1964–2008) was the same as that of the Dodgers in Ebbets Field.

Other sports at Ebbets Field

Ebbets Field also hosted three pro football teams – the New York Brickley Giants for one game in 1921, the Brooklyn Lions/Horsemen in 1926, and the Brooklyn Dodgers/Tigers from 1930 to 1944. However, it was used more frequently for collegiate match-ups, and was home base for Manhattan College's football team in the 1930s.[20][21][22]

The stadium also hosted numerous soccer games, including the U.S. National Challenge Cup soccer tournament, now known as the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. Bethlehem Steel F.C. from Pennsylvania of the American Soccer League won its sixth and final National Challenge Cup title, on April 11, 1926, scoring a convincing 7-2 victory over Ben Miller F.C. of St. Louis in the final before more than 18,000 fans.[23]

On June 7, 1931, over 10,000 fans came out to Ebbets Field to watch Celtic of Scotland defeat Brooklyn Wanderers 5-0.[24]

On June 17, 1947, the first known televised soccer game in the US took place when Hapoel Tel Aviv lost to the American League Stars 2-0.[25] On June 18, 1948, Liverpool of England beat Djurgården of Sweden 3-2 in front of 20,000 fans.[26] On October 17 of that year, the U.S. national team beat the Israel national team in front of 25,000 fans.[27] On May 8, 1955, Sunderland of England beat the American league Stars 7-2.[28] On May 17, Sunderland tied 1. FC Nürnberg of Germany.[29] On May 25, 1958, Manchester City of England lost to Hearts of Scotland 6-5 in front of more than 20,000 patrons. The winners received the Empire State Cup, which can be seen in the Heart of Midlothian FC Museum.[30][31] On June 28, 1959, Napoli of Italy lost to Rapid Vienna of Austria 1-0 in front of 18,512, and game officials were attacked afterwards.[32] At the rematch three days later in front of 13,000 people, Napoli tied Rapid Vienna 1-1, in one of the last events held there.[33]

Gaelic football was also played at Ebbets Field. On June 24, 1931, the world champion County Kerry team defeated Kildare by a score of 18-3 with an attendance of 2,500 fans under floodlights in a night game.[34]

Ebbets Field also hosted nearly 90 fight cards in its history.[35]

Dimensions

Ebbets Field aerial
Packed house at Ebbets Field
Ebbets Field Interior 1950
A night game at Ebbets Field, 1950
Original (estimates)
Dimension Distance
Left field pole 419 ft (128 m)
Center field deep 477 ft (145 m)
Right field pole 301 ft (92 m)
1932–1947
Dimension Distance Notes
Left field pole 348 ft (106 m) unposted
Left field corner 357 ft (109 m)
Left-center field 365 ft (111 m)
Deep left-center 407 ft (124 m)
Deep right-center bleacher corner 389 ft (119 m) unposted
Deep right-center notch 395 ft (120 m)
Right-center, scoreboard edges 344 ft (105 m) and 318 ft (97 m)
Right field pole 297 ft (91 m)
1948–1957
Dimension Distance
Left field pole 348 ft (106 m)
Left-center field 351 ft (107 m)
Deep left-center 393 ft (120 m)
Deep right-center bleacher corner 376 ft (115 m)
Deep right-center notch 395 ft (120 m)
Right-center, scoreboard edges 344 ft (105 m) and 318 ft (97 m)
Right field pole 297 ft (91 m)
Backstop 71 ft (22 m)
Events and tenants
Preceded by
Washington Park
Home of the Brooklyn Dodgers
1913–1957
Succeeded by
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Preceded by
Sportsman's Park
Host of the All-Star Game
1949
Succeeded by
Comiskey Park

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Lowry, Phil (2006). Green Cathedrals: The Ultimate Celebrations of All 273 Major League and Negro League Ballparks Past and Present. New York City: Addison Wesley Publishing Company. ISBN 0-201-62229-7.
  2. ^ a b "Dirt Flies in New Brooklyn Ball Park – President Ebbets Turns the First Spadeful and Borough President Speers Makes Speech". New York Times. March 5, 1912. p. 4. Retrieved 25 September 2016.
  3. ^ Hollander, Sophia (April 19, 2012). "Soon on Display in Brooklyn: 'Holy Grails' of Baseball". Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on April 12, 2016. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  4. ^ "Ebbets Field". Baseball Almanac. Archived from the original on December 22, 2001. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  5. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  6. ^ "Ebbets Field". BallparkTour.com. Archived from the original on 2011-09-06. Retrieved 2018-10-28.
  7. ^ a b Lowry, Philip (2006). Green Cathedrals. Walker & Company. p. 40. ISBN 978-0-8027-1608-8.
  8. ^ Roberts, Sam (February 26, 2014). "Honorific Streets, Now Cataloged". New York Times. p. A23. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  9. ^ "Cornerstone Laid at Ebbets Field – New Baseball Park for the Brooklyns, in Flatbush, to be Ready on Sept. 1". New York Times. July 6, 1912. p. S1. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  10. ^ "Ebbets Takes In Partners – McKeever Brothers Buy Shares in Brooklyn Baseball Club". New York Times. August 30, 1912. p. 7. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  11. ^ Ward, Geoffrey C.; Burns, Ken (1996). Baseball: An Illustrated History. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. ISBN 0-679-76541-7.
  12. ^ "Ebbets Field Opening Victory for Superbas – 30,000 Fans Jam Into New Home of Brooklyn Club – Yankees Lose, 3 to 2". New York Times. April 6, 1913. p. S1. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  13. ^ "Yankees Win Costly Game in Brooklyn – Manager Chance, Warhop, and Derrick Injured Playing in Cold Atmosphere". New York Times. April 8, 1913. p. 11. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  14. ^ "Brooklyn Starts Season a Loser". The New York Times. April 10, 1913. p. 9. Retrieved 2010-01-16.
  15. ^ Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. v. Sed Non Olet Denarius, Ltd., 817 F. Supp. 1103, 1111 (S.D.N.Y. 1993).
  16. ^ McGee, Bob (2005). The Greatest Ballpark Ever – Ebbets Field and the Story of the Brooklyn Dodgers (hardcover ed.). New Brunswick (N.J.) and London (Eng.): Rutgers University Press. pp. 15–18. ISBN 0-8135-3600-6. Retrieved 29 August 2016.
  17. ^ DiFranza, Lenny. "Chip off the Block". National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. Retrieved October 28, 2018.
  18. ^ "New Chapter for Ebbets Field: Apartments Open This Month". The New York Times. September 2, 1962. p. 159. Retrieved 2010-04-18.
  19. ^ ""Ebbets Field" Street Signed Sold for $60,000". Upcoming Autograph Signings. January 28, 2014. Archived from the original on March 2, 2014. Retrieved October 28, 2018.
  20. ^ "NFL in NYC: Pro Football's History in the Five Boroughs". nycurbed.com. Curbed NY. February 3, 2016. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  21. ^ David S. Neft, Richard M. Cohen, and Rick Korch, The Football Encyclopedia: The Complete History of Professional Football, From 1892 to the Present (St. Martin's Press 1994), ISBN 0-312-11435-4
  22. ^ "Manhattan College All-Time Football Records". luckyshow.org. P.S.Luchter. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  23. ^ "Bethlehem Wins, 7-2; Takes Soccer Title – Downs Ben Millers of St. Louis Before Record Crowd of 18,000 for U.S. Crown – Largest Score in Series – Widest Margin Known in Championship Play - Fifth National Triumph for Victors Stark Tallies Three Times - Makes Two of His Goals in First Period - Nash Registers Twice for Losers at Ebbets Field". New York Times. April 12, 1926. p. 26. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  24. ^ "Glasgow Celtics Top Wanderers, 5-0 – McGrory Leads Scottish Soccer Champions' Attack Until He Is Injured – Makes Two of the Goals – Visitors Finish With Ten Men as 10,000 See Game – Brooklyn Celtics Win, 3 to 1 – McGrory Scores Again". New York Times. June 8, 1931. p. 23. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  25. ^ "Soccer All-Stars Blank Hapoel, 2-0 – 20,000 See Palestine Eleven Lose Closing Game of Tour to American Leaguers". New York Times. June 18, 1948. p. 35. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  26. ^ Strauss, Michael (June 19, 1948). "Djurgarden Loses To Liverpool, 3-2 – British Soccer Team Triumphs With Drive in Last Half Before 18,400 Fans". New York Times. p. 11. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  27. ^ Nichols, Joseph C. (October 18, 1948). "Israeli Soccer Team Vanquished by All-Stars in Last Game of Tour – U.S. Eleven Halts Visiting Squad, 3-2 – Watman Scores Twice to Lead American League All-Stars in Victory Over Israelis – Notables Watch Contest – Leibowitz, Cashmore, Bennett Take Part in Ceremonies to Mark End of Tour Here". New York Times. p. 33. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  28. ^ Briordy, William J. (May 9, 1955). "Sunderland's Booters Triumph Over All-Star Eleven by 7 to 2 - English League Team Scores Easily at Ebbets Field in Soccer Tour Opener". New York Times. p. 32. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  29. ^ "Nuremberg Ties Sunderland, 1-1 – 15,450 at Ebbets Field See Late Morlock Goal Match Purdon's for British". New York Times. May 18, 1955. p. 38. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  30. ^ "London Hearts Supporters Club". londonhearts.com. May 25, 1958. Retrieved October 28, 2018.
  31. ^ Briordy, William J. (May 26, 1958). "Edinburgh Booters Overcome Manchester at Ebbets Field – 20,606 See Rally Bring 6-5 Victory – Hearts of Midlothian Downs English First Division Club on Rain-Soaked Field". New York Times. p. 37. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  32. ^ White Jr., Gordon S. (June 29, 1959). "Soccer Fans Riot and Injure Three Officials and Patrolman at Ebbets Field – Melee Follows 1-0 Napoli Loss – Game Officials Cut, Special Patrolman Knocked Out – Assailants Escape". New York Times. p. 37. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  33. ^ Sheehan, Joseph M. (July 2, 1959). "Rapid And Napoli Play A Placid Tie; Only One Chair Is Thrown in 1-to-1 Soccer Deadlock at Ebbets Field". New York Times. p. 30. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  34. ^ "Kerry Beats Kildare in Gaelic Football – Triumphs by 18 to 3 Before Crowd of 2,500 in a Night Game at Ebbets Field". New York Times. June 25, 1931. p. 29. Retrieved 4 September 2016.
  35. ^ "Baseball stadiums once played host to major boxing events". espn.com. Retrieved 2 February 2018.

Further reading

  • Green Cathedrals, by Phil Lowry.
  • Ballparks of North America, by Michael Benson.
  • Old Ballparks, by Lawrence Ritter.
  • The Zodiacs, by Jay Neugeboren.
  • The Greatest Ballpark Ever: Ebbets Field and the Story of the Brooklyn Dodgers, by Bob McGee.

External links

1913 Brooklyn Dodgers season

The 1913 team saw the team named shortened to the Brooklyn Dodgers and the team moved into the new stadium at Ebbets Field. Jake Daubert won the Chalmers Award as the leagues Most Valuable Player but the team finished only in sixth place.

1920 Cleveland Indians season

The 1920 Cleveland Indians season was the 20th season in franchise history. The Indians won the American League pennant and proceeded to win their first World Series title in the history of the franchise. Pitchers Jim Bagby, Stan Coveleski and Ray Caldwell combined to win 75 games. Despite the team's success, the season was perhaps more indelibly marked by the death of starting shortstop Ray Chapman, who died after being hit by a pitch on August 17.

1938 Brooklyn Dodgers season

The 1938 Brooklyn Dodgers season was their 55th season. The team finished with a record of 69–80, finishing in seventh place in the National League. The 1938 season saw Babe Ruth hired as the first base coach, and lights installed by the team at Ebbets Field on June 15.

1947 Major League Baseball season

The 1947 Major League Baseball season, on opening day, the New York Giants were at the Phillies, the Yankees were home in the Bronx against the Philadelphia A's and the Brooklyn Dodgers were home to open against the Boston Braves at Ebbets Field.

Jackie Robinson was in the Dodgers lineup, playing first base. This began a new chapter in Major League Baseball, as it was the first time an African American had been allowed to play in the league. There were more than 26,000 fans at Ebbets Field that day.

1949 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1949 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 16th annual midseason exhibition game for Major League Baseball all-stars between the American League (AL) and the National League (NL). The AL continued its early dominance of the Midsummer Classic with an 11–7 win at Ebbets Field, home field of the NL's Brooklyn Dodgers. The win moved the AL's all-time record in the game to 12–4.

The 1949 All-Star Game was the first to have African-Americans in the line-up. Jackie Robinson of the Dodgers started for the NL at second base, while his teammates catcher Roy Campanella and pitcher Don Newcombe also played for the NL. Cleveland Indians' outfielder Larry Doby played the final four innings of the game for the AL.

1949 World Series

The 1949 World Series featured the New York Yankees and the Brooklyn Dodgers, with the Yankees winning in five games for their second defeat of the Dodgers in three years, and the twelfth championship in team history. This victory would start a record run of five consecutive World Series championships by the Yankees, and was also the first of 14 AL pennants in 16 years (1949–1964 except for 1954 and 1959) for the Yankees.

Both teams finished the regular season with exactly the same records and winning their respective leagues by exactly one game.

1952 World Series

The 1952 World Series featured the 3-time defending champions New York Yankees beating the Brooklyn Dodgers in seven games. The Yankees won their 4th consecutive title, tying the mark they set in 1936–1939 under manager Joe McCarthy, and Casey Stengel became the second manager in Major League history with 4 consecutive World Series championships. This was the Yankees' 15th World Series championship win, and the 3rd time they defeated the Dodgers in 6 years.

In Game 7, the Yankees' second baseman Billy Martin made a great catch, preserving the Yankees' two-run lead. Also, the home run hit by Mickey Mantle during the 8th inning of Game 6 was significant because it was the first of his record 18 career World Series home runs.

The NBC telecasts of Games 6 and 7 are believed to be the oldest surviving television broadcasts of the World Series, as they were preserved via kinescope by sponsor Gillette.

1955 World Series

The 1955 World Series matched the Brooklyn Dodgers against the New York Yankees, with the Dodgers winning the Series in seven games to capture their first championship in franchise history. It would be the only Series the Dodgers won while based in Brooklyn, as the team relocated to Los Angeles after the 1957 season. This was the fifth time in nine years that the Yankees and the Dodgers met in the World Series, with the Yankees having won in 1947, 1949, 1952, and 1953; the Yankees would also win in the 1956 rematch.

This Series also marked the end of a long period of invulnerability for the Yankees in World Series. It was the Yankees' first loss in a World Series since 1942 and only their second since 1926. While the Yankees were 15–2 in Series appearances during that time, they would lose again in 1957, 1960, 1963, and 1964, for a record of 4–5 in World Series over the next decade.

1956 Major League Baseball season

The 1956 Major League Baseball season was contested from April 17 to October 10, 1956, featuring eight teams in the National League and eight teams in the American League. The 1956 World Series was a rematch of the previous year's series between the New York Yankees and the Brooklyn Dodgers. The series is notable for Yankees pitcher Don Larsen's perfect game in Game 5.

1956 World Series

The 1956 World Series of Major League Baseball was played between the New York Yankees (representing the American League) and the defending champion Brooklyn Dodgers (representing the National League) during October 1956. The Series was a rematch of the 1955 World Series. It was the last all-New York City Series until 44 years later in 2000; the Dodgers and the New York Giants moved to California after the 1957 season. Additionally, it was the last time a New York team represented the National League until 1969 when the New York Mets defeated the Baltimore Orioles in five games.

The Yankees won the Series in seven games, capturing their seventeenth championship. Brooklyn won Games 1 and 2, but New York pitchers threw five consecutive complete games (Games 3–7) to cap off the comeback. The highlight was Don Larsen's perfect game in Game 5. Larsen was named the Series MVP for his achievement. The Dodgers scored 19 runs in the first two games, but only 6 in the remaining five games, with just one in the final three games.

This was the last World Series to date not to have scheduled off days (although Game 2 was postponed a day due to rain).

As of April 2015, three original television broadcasts from this Series (Games 2 partial, Games 3 and 5) had been released on DVD.

1957 Brooklyn Dodgers season

The 1957 Brooklyn Dodgers season was overshadowed by Walter O'Malley's threat to move the Dodgers out of Brooklyn if the city did not build him a new stadium in that borough. When the best the mayor could promise was a stadium in Queens, O'Malley made good on his threats and moved the team to Los Angeles after the season ended. The Dodgers final game at Ebbets Field was on September 24 as they finished their 68th and last NL season, and their 75th overall, in Brooklyn in third place with an 84–70 record, eleven games behind the NL and World Series Champion Milwaukee Braves.

Brooklyn Dodgers (NFL)

The Brooklyn Dodgers were an American football team that played in the National Football League from 1930 to 1943, and in 1944 as the Brooklyn Tigers. The team played its home games at Ebbets Field of the baseball National League's team, the Brooklyn Dodgers. In 1945, because of financial difficulties and the increasing scarcity of major league-level players because of the war-time defense requirements at the height of World War II, the team was merged with the Boston Yanks and were known as the Yanks for that season.

This old NFL franchise was not related to the earlier (second incarnation) American Football League II with a franchise that played as the Brooklyn Tigers for the first half of the 1936 season before moving to Rochester, New York and playing as the Rochester Tigers. Another NFL team that played in the Brooklyn borough was the Brooklyn Lions (which became the Brooklyn Horsemen after merging with a team from an earlier first incarnation AFL of the same name) in 1926.

In 1946, co-owner and partner Dan Topping (1912–1974) pulled the Tigers team out of the old NFL and placed it in the newly established rival professional league – the All-America Football Conference, which shortly lasted until 1949, until several stronger teams from the AAFC merged with and entered a reorganized NFL in 1950. It lasted until 1970 with the NFL-AFL (third) merger following the establishment of the first "Super Bowl" inter-league national championship game three years before with the old NFL champions playing the victors of the latest rival fourth incarnation of the American Football League IV, formed in 1960 (now the American Football Conference (AFC).

Brooklyn Lions / Horsemen (1926)

The Brooklyn Lions were a National Football League team that played in the 1926 NFL season. The team was formed as the league's counter-move to the first American Football League, which enfranchised a team called the Brooklyn Horsemen, a professional football team that competed in the 1926 AFL season.

In the months before the regular season began, both leagues battled with each other for fan support and the right to play at Ebbets Field. The NFL emerged as the winner, as the Lions signed the lease to use the stadium on July 20.On November 12, 1926, the Horsemen withdrew from the AFL and merged with Lions. The new team created by the merger was initially called the Brooklyn Lions and competed in the NFL from November 22, 1926. For the last three games of the 1926, the team used the Horsemen name to finish the season. After three consecutive losses by shutout, the merged team winked out of existence.

Brooklyn Tip-Tops

The Brooklyn Tip-Tops were a team in the short-lived Federal League of professional baseball from 1914 to 1915. The team was named by owner Robert Ward, who owned the Ward Baking Company. They were sometimes informally called the Brooklyn Feds or BrookFeds due to being the Brooklyn team of the Federal League. The Tip Tops played in old Washington Park, which the Brooklyn Dodgers had abandoned after the 1912 season to move to Ebbets Field.

Hilda Chester

Hilda Chester (September 1, 1897 – December 1, 1978), also known as Howlin' Hilda, was a Brooklyn Dodgers fan, and arguably the most famous fan in baseball history.

History of the Brooklyn Dodgers

The Brooklyn Dodgers were a Major League baseball team, active primarily in the National League (founded 1876) from 1884 until 1957, after which the club moved to Los Angeles, California, where it continues its history as the Los Angeles Dodgers. The team moved west at the same time as its longtime rivals, the New York Giants, also in the National League, relocated to San Francisco in northern California as the San Francisco Giants. The team's name derived from the reputed skill of Brooklyn residents at evading the city's trolley streetcar network. The Dodgers played in two stadiums in South Brooklyn, each named Washington Park, and at Eastern Park in the neighborhood of Brownsville before moving to Ebbets Field in the neighborhood of Flatbush in 1913. The team is noted for signing Jackie Robinson in 1947 as the first black player in the modern major leagues.

List of Brooklyn Dodgers Opening Day starting pitchers

From their inception in 1884 through their last year in Brooklyn, 1957, the Brooklyn Dodgers (also known as the Trolley Dodgers, Grooms, Bridegrooms, Superbas, and Robins at various times in their history) used 41 different starting pitchers on Opening Day. Brickyard Kennedy made the most Opening Day starts for the Brooklyn Dodgers, with 6 such starts between 1894 and 1900. Nap Rucker made 5 such starts between 1907 and 1913. Carl Erskine made 4 Opening Day starts between 1951 and 1955 and Van Mungo also made 4 Opening Day starts between 1934 and 1938. Five Brooklyn pitchers made 3 Opening Day starts: Leon Cadore, Watty Clark, Don Newcombe, Jesse Petty, Dutch Ruether. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor, which is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day.The Dodgers played in the modern World Series nine times before moving to Los Angeles, winning once in 1955, when Carl Esrkine was the Opening Day pitcher. Erskine was also the Opening Day pitcher in 1953 when they played in the World Series but lost to the New York Yankees. Joe Hatten also had two Opening Day starts in World Series years, 1947 and 1949. Other Opening Day starting pitchers in World Series years were Larry Cheney in 1916, Leon Cadore in 1920, Whit Wyatt in 1941, Preacher Roe in 1952, and Don Newcombe in 1956.

Prior to the existence of the modern World Series, the Dodgers won National League championships in 1890, 1899 and 1900. They also won an American Association championship in 1889, when the American Association was considered a Major League. They played in the 19th century version of the World Series in 1889 and 1890. Mickey Hughes was the Opening Day starting pitcher in 1889, Bob Caruthers was the Opening Day starting pitcher in 1890, and Kennedy was the Opening Day starting pitcher in 1899 and 1900.

Don Newcombe was the starting pitcher in 1956, the last Opening Day that the Dodgers played in their longtime home field, Ebbets Field. Newcombe was also the Opening Day starter on Opening Day of the 1957 season, the Dodgers last Opening Day before moving to Los Angeles. Nap Rucker was the Opening Day starting pitcher in the last Opening Day the team (then called the Trolley Dodgers) played at their previous home park, Washington Park, in 1912. Rucker was also the Opening Day pitcher in the first game at Ebbets Field in 1913.

Joe Hatten was the Opening Day starting pitcher in one of the most momentous games in baseball history. That was in 1947, the years of Jackie Robinson's first game in the Major Leagues, ending the racial segregation that had prevailed in Major League Baseball since before 1900. The Joe Hatten started and the Dodgers won Jackie Robinson's first major league game, beating the Boston Braves 5-3 at Ebbets Field.

Proposed domed Brooklyn Dodgers stadium

A proposed domed stadium for the Brooklyn Dodgers, designed by Buckminster Fuller, was to replace Ebbets Field for the Brooklyn Dodgers to allow them to stay in New York City. The Dodgers instead moved to Chavez Ravine in Los Angeles. First announced in the early 1950s, the envisioned structure would have seated 52,000 people and been the first domed stadium in the world, opening roughly a decade before Houston's Astrodome. The stadium, in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, would have been located at the northeast corner of Flatbush Avenue and Atlantic Avenue, on the site of the Atlantic Terminal. It would have cost $6 million to build and been privately financed. It was never built.

The general area eventually did become a sports venue, because Barclays Center was built across the street to the south from the Atlantic Terminal, in neighboring Pacific Park.

Stephen McKeever

Stephen W. McKeever (October 31, 1853 in Brooklyn, New York – March 7, 1938 in Brooklyn, New York) was a construction contractor in Brooklyn, New York in the early 1900s. He and his brother Ed bought half of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team from Henry Medicus on January 2, 1912. Together with Charles Ebbets, who owned the other half of the team, they built Ebbets Field. When Ebbets died on April 18, 1925, Ed McKeever took over as team president. However, he caught a cold at Ebbets' funeral and died on April 29. Steve McKeever became the acting team president until Wilbert Robinson was elected team president on May 25, 1925. Steve McKeever was elected team president on October 12, 1932, and remained a 50% owner of the Dodgers until his death in 1938. He was buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Brooklyn.

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