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Thread: “So, why are you so incensed that the Dodgers moved out of Brooklyn?”

  1. #21
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    On October 9, 1957, a headline in the New York Herald-Tribune placed a lingering fear into words that carried a dreaded finality, “It’s Official — Dodgers Go To Los Angeles.” Under the byline of Dodgers beat writer Tommy Holmes were the words, “The Dodgers yesterday took the irrevocable step from Ebbets Field to Los Angeles.”
    And so it was over. The fat lady had sung; the song had ended; King Kong had fallen from the top of the Empire State Building; for Brooklyn fans it was the beginning of the winter of our discontent. The Dodgers had left Brooklyn. It was with melancholy, and sadness and depression, but not without rancor that the Flatbush Faithful bid their beloved Bums adieu. I was 11 years old, and to say the least, both stunned and heartbroken.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  2. #22
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    The malice and resentment was directed at one man, and though New York City Parks Commissioner and “Czar” Robert Moses has been implicated in the abduction, it was eminently clear to the populous of the borough that one man only carried that responsibility — one Walter Francis O’Malley.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    The malice and resentment was directed at one man, and though New York City Parks Commissioner and “Czar” Robert Moses has been implicated in the abduction, it was eminently clear to the populous of the borough that one man only carried that responsibility — one Walter Francis O’Malley.
    O’Malley, the president of the Dodgers, has been variously described as shrewd, congenial, and conversational to the point of manifesting a bit of the blarney. An astute businessman, he was outwardly candid, friendly and charming. Physically he was a bit portly, bespeckled and perpetually armed with a cigar tucked into a holder.

    But he was often described in other ways. Branch Rickey said “he was the most devious man I’ve ever met,” and Leo Durocher derisively called him “Whalebelly” to his face.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    The malice and resentment was directed at one man, and though New York City Parks Commissioner and “Czar” Robert Moses has been implicated in the abduction, it was eminently clear to the populous of the borough that one man only carried that responsibility — one Walter Francis O’Malley.
    He held court with convivial afternoons over drinks and poker at the Hotel Bossert. He grew to be a presence, the presence among his counterparts in the major leagues. O’Malley was considered to be a manipulator of people and events. In engineering the exodus of major league baseball to the West Coast, it appears to be a plan he had been nurturing for years, all the while “negotiating” with the city of New York to keep the Dodgers in Brooklyn.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    On October 9, 1957, a headline in the New York Herald-Tribune placed a lingering fear into words that carried a dreaded finality, “It’s Official — Dodgers Go To Los Angeles.” Under the byline of Dodgers beat writer Tommy Holmes were the words, “The Dodgers yesterday took the irrevocable step from Ebbets Field to Los Angeles.”
    And so it was over. The fat lady had sung; the song had ended; King Kong had fallen from the top of the Empire State Building; for Brooklyn fans it was the beginning of the winter of our discontent. The Dodgers had left Brooklyn. It was with melancholy, and sadness and depression, but not without rancor that the Flatbush Faithful bid their beloved Bums adieu. I was 11 years old, and to say the least, both stunned and heartbroken.
    Los Angeles first began to be mentioned as a site for a baseball franchise in 1941 when Don Barnes, owner of the St. Louis Browns, requested that he be allowed to relocate his team to L.A. He believed that he had all the bases covered, including scheduling and claimed to have the necessary votes from the owners.

    His request was on the agenda at the major league meetings and was to be addressed at 9 a.m. on Monday, December 8, 1941. Events of December 7 made the move a moot point, since baseball was not even sure of playing at all in the coming season.

    Immediately following the dispatching of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, Los Angeles was back on track as a potential major league city.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    The malice and resentment was directed at one man, and though New York City Parks Commissioner and “Czar” Robert Moses has been implicated in the abduction, it was eminently clear to the populous of the borough that one man only carried that responsibility — one Walter Francis O’Malley.
    In the July 7, 1948 issue of The Sporting News, it was reported that Los Angeles County Supervisor Leonard Roach led a contingent of LA officials on a hunt for a big league ball club. They sought the St. Louis Browns and the Chicago Cubs. Although turned down this time, Los Angeles and the major leagues were growing closer and closer.

    By the time O’Malley had forced Branch Rickey out and totally taken over control of the organization after the 1950 season, it was no longer a question of if Los Angeles would become a part of major league baseball, but when, and who would be the one to nail it down.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  7. #27
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    Meanwhile, the saga of Walter O’Malley and Robert Moses was being perpetuated in the middle fifties. O’Malley had been hinting at the need for a new stadium for the Dodgers since the late forties. He was making money in Brooklyn. In 1956 the Dodgers showed a net profit of $487,000; the Braves in Milwaukee netted $362,000. The Dodgers were recording a million-plus in attendance every season, a profitable number in that era, and were raking in $800,000 in television revenue. Still, with his decrepit old ballpark in a neighborhood with changing demographics and his ball club getting old, O’Malley wondered whether the revenues would be able to be maintained.

    In August of 1955, the Dodgers announced that they would play seven “home” games in Jersey City’s Roosevelt Stadium, a subtle hint that if he didn’t get his way, the Dodgers could wind up someplace else. Dick Young in the New York Daily News wrote that the Dodgers were “inching their way westward.”
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  8. #28
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    The authority being cited was Title I of the Federal Housing Act of 1949, allowing the city to condemn a parcel of land to be replaced by a public project or to be sold to a private developer whose construction would conform to a “public purpose.” O’Malley wanted a site at Flatbush and Atlantic avenues in Downtown Brooklyn, but Moses refused to allow the building of a ball park, as he considered it not to be in accord with the intent of the Act. The entire question of blame hinges on whether the Dodgers’ boss was sincere in his desire to obtain this piece of property.

    Some thought not. Bill Veeck has written that “They couldn’t have met his demands, of course, because if they had given him what he wanted, he’d probably have kept changing them.”
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  9. #29
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    O’Malley was then offered a site at Flushing Meadows in Queens, where the current Mets reside. He refused it, saying that Dodgers fans would know that it wasn’t in Brooklyn. Presumably, they wouldn’t notice that Los Angeles was not in Brooklyn either.

    Following the Braves, shift to Milwaukee, Veeck maintains, he made an offer to O’Malley to purchase the Dodgers with the idea of taking the club to Los Angeles. Veeck was refused, of course, but came away with an interesting supposition. “When I left his office, it was with the distinct impression that O’Malley wasn’t going to sell the club to me because he had already mapped out Los Angeles for himself. And that was four years before he moved.”
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  10. #30
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    There were two primary reasons for O’Malley to want to build and own his own ballpark. One was parking, for which all proceeds would be his. At the Flatbush and Atlantic site, projections ranged from 2,500 parking spaces to 5,000; in L.A. he got 16,000. Another reason was television. Nobody can call the Dodgers boss a fool, and he was decidedly ahead of his time when he zeroed in on pay TV. With free television, he believed that the best approach was to air away games and black out all home games, thus buttering up the fans’ appetite when the team came home. This, he believed would increase home attendance. Brooklyn fans were already being treated to 100 televised games, all home games and the remaining, select road games. With two other teams in NYC televising games, O’Malley would not have exclusive control of the airways. His plan could not effectively be implicated in Brooklyn.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  11. #31
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    O’Malley knew that he had every opportunity of having it all on the gold coast. Brooklyn never had a chance! There is every reason to agree with writer Dave Anderson when he said, “O’Malley would have broken through a brick wall to get his team to LA.”
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    O’Malley knew that he had every opportunity of having it all on the gold coast. Brooklyn never had a chance! There is every reason to agree with writer Dave Anderson when he said, “O’Malley would have broken through a brick wall to get his team to LA.”
    Now...........all of you younger fans (or fans who lived in mid-America during these times)...........I say enjoy all the "documentaries" and recent "tell-all" books....................but this is what happened (the above ten posts). Period.
    Last edited by penncentralpete; 07-31-2009 at 11:46 AM.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  13. #33
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    One quick correction...the Dodgers televised 129 games in Brooklyn, all 77 home games and 52 road games...and 11 more road games did not have to be televised as they were televised on channel 11 by the Giants (the games in New York!

    Pay television was still more than a decade away. And of course this wonderful human being showed his new fans in Los Angeles how much he loved them by ripping all the games off television. It was to be several years before any Dodger games were televised on the West Coast and even then the only games he televised were the 11 games played in San Francisco.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by MATHA531 View Post
    One quick correction...the Dodgers televised 129 games in Brooklyn, all 77 home games and 52 road games...and 11 more road games did not have to be televised as they were televised on channel 11 by the Giants (the games in New York!

    Pay television was still more than a decade away. And of course this wonderful human being showed his new fans in Los Angeles how much he loved them by ripping all the games off television. It was to be several years before any Dodger games were televised on the West Coast and even then the only games he televised were the 11 games played in San Francisco.
    I meant to add a plus sign after the number 100(+). The main thrust of it was that O'Malley made $800,000 from these telecasts.
    you can take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn, but you can't take the Brooklyn out of the DODGERS
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  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by penncentralpete View Post
    I meant to add a plus sign after the number 100(+). The main thrust of it was that O'Malley made $800,000 from these telecasts.
    and given the general price of tickets at the time.....that's a nice bit of pocket money...

  16. #36
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    for those who want facts...800,000 1957 dollars had the buying power of 6,093,623.19 2009 dollars....given tv was in it's infancy and advertising and other sources of revenue, syndication etc... was not exploited fully....that was a huge sum for our local WOR to come up with

  17. #37
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    ....and the Dodgers television rights were worth far more than even that of the Yankees (who had to share their television outlet, channel 11, with the Giants). It was also the reason why the Dodgers were still the biggest money makers in baseball, even in 1957 the year the franchise was stolen and puts to a lie O'Malley's contention that he had to move to be able to keep up with Milwaukee.

  18. #38
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    Add to that the Giants leaving and if you wanted to see Nl baseball in New York...you'd go to the dodger games...which would boost revenue...my guess a lot of giant fants would have come out to see mays and co...face the brooklyn dodgers too. battlin bake the dodger dynamo...ps. some old giant fans would have come out to root for anybody facing the dodgers...

  19. #39
    Just one thing, Moses didn't and couldn't prevent a ballpark from being built at Atlantic and Flatbush. For instance O'Malley could hasve bought the land in a private sale.Moses wasn't going to use Title I to be used because he didn't thing building a ballpark for a private business fell under the definition of Title I. Right now the same battle is going on over whether a new arena will be built for the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets. In one of the other threads her Buczilla posted a letter to SI putting in his own words what he thought O'Malley was pulling. Perhaps that post could be put here as well. That short essay says a whole lot.
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  20. #40
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    After careful research, and by reading these threads I have come to the educated conclusion that O'Malley was a thieving, conniving, little twerp. Think I already knew it, but I'm just throwing it out there!

    I also discovered through geometric logic that a duplicate copy of the key to the wardroom icebox DID exist, Ah, but the strawberries!

    Sorry, a bit too many libations tonight, felt like quoting the great Bogie!
    Last edited by theAmazingMet; 07-31-2009 at 09:25 PM.
    unknown brooklyn cabbie " how are the brooks doin"
    unknown fan "good they got three men on base"
    unknown brooklyn cabbie "which one?"

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