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This Day in Walter O’Malley History

August 4

August 4, 1953

Walter O’Malley presses for a stricter rule to discipline pitchers who pitch at an opposing hitter’s head after an incident involving a Dodger hitter and a Milwaukee Brave pitcher. Under present rules, the home plate umpire could eject a pitcher only if the umpire was certain the pitcher was deliberately throwing at a hitter. “That is a weakness of the rule,” said O’Malley. “That the umpire has to be sure of the pitcher’s intent. A baseball is a dangerous weapon and when an umpire accuses a pitcher of intent, he is almost accusing him of criminal action. At the next National League meeting, I’m going to press for a new rule along these lines: That an umpire who believes a pitcher is sufficiently wild to endanger hitters can eject him from the game.” O’Malley went on to say, “The close pitch is a part of baseball but there is not much difference between a close pitch and a pitch at a batter’s head. If the umpire thinks the pitcher doesn’t have enough control to pitch batters tight without coming dangerously close to their heads, he’ll be empowered to eject the pitcher under the proposed rule.”New York Herald Tribune, August 5, 1953

August 4, 1956

A plan proposed by Walter O’Malley would provide $500,000 to minor league teams for the operation of the team during the season. O’Malley developed a plan to have 20 teams of selected major league players play in minor league cities for a “National Baseball Day.”New York Daily News, August 4, 1956 The plan was submitted to the major league clubs for review but the proposal was never implemented.

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