Ralph Branca, the Brooklyn Dodgers hurler who gave up the 1951 home run known as the “Shot Heard Round The World” died at the age of 90 on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 in Rye Brook, NY.
After giving up the home run, Branca was unjustly made a poster boy for failure. A three time All-Star, Branca was a very good pitcher and had won 75 games by the age of 25. An injury in 1953 cut short his promising career.
The Giants Win The Pennant! 1952 Chesterfield cigarettes limited edition LP record
The home run that Bobby Thomson of the Giants hit off Branca to win the third and deciding playoff game, was very likely a pitch that Thomson knew was coming.
The Giants had been stealing signs from opposing teams catchers and relaying them to their hitters with a telescope and a buzzer system at home games at the Polo Grounds during the season. It was confirmed years later that the Giants had tipped batters during the playoff game as well. Thomson though never admitted to having been tipped to what the pitch would be that won the game.
The Moment Bobby Thomson Hit His “Shot Heard Round The World”
Bobby Thomson connects, Oct. 3, 1951, catcher is Rube Walker, umpire is Lou Jorda photo: Wide World
This article is titled “A Day Brooklyn Dodgers Fans Would Love To Forget” but in actuality Brooklyn Dodgers fans are dwindling in number.
You’d have to be at least 60 years old to have any memory of “dem bums” playing at that great ballpark known as Ebbets Field. The team moved to Los Angeles in 1958, breaking everyone in Brooklyn’s hearts.
The day the Dodgers left Brooklyn for smoggy L.A. was a horrible moment, but no moment was as painful for Dodgers fans as the Giants bottom of the ninth inning comeback of a best two out of three playoff series with the Dodgers.
On Wednesday October 3, 1951 one of the most memorable events in all of baseball history occurred. A seen in the photo above, Dodgers fans were devastated when the New York Giants third baseman Bobby Thomson hit a one out, three run home run to left field off of Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca, to give the Giants a 5-4 miracle win at the Polo Grounds and propel them into the World Series against the Yankees. Continue reading →
Sure it’s just a posed publicity photo, but there was a time when ballplayers actually did interact with fans. At the New York Giants’ spring training home in Phoenix, Arizona, Bobby Thomson demonstrates to a little cowboy, Dennis Filan age five, the proper way to grip a baseball bat on March 6, 1953.
Thomson, who will forever occupy a spot in every Giants fans heart for hitting the most famous homerun in baseball history the “shot heard ’round the world” in 1951, was typical of many ballplayers before astronomical salaries became the norm for baseball. These players spent time among the fans.
Not only that, most players worked other jobs in the off-season to make ends meet. They lived among regular people, who went to the ballgames and had daily interactions with them. In New York and many other major league cities, most players took public transportation or walked to the ballpark from their homes. The players were an integral part of the community they played in.