Short Stops

Bringing the World to Ebbets Field

In the April 23, 1954 Brooklyn Daily Eagle, an editorial commented about Dodger President Walter O’Malley’s international relationships and involvement. In the years to follow, O’Malley continued to build friendships through baseball around the world.

An April 23, 1954 article from the Brooklyn Daily Eagle about Walter O’Malley and his international friendships with the statement, “He has become a walking ambassador for America and particularly for Brooklyn.”

Walter O’Malley, Diplomat!

“Walter O’Malley, president of the Brooklyn Dodgers, should be regarded by the Department of State as a useful unofficial aide in helping our foreign relations. The latest incident along this line was his playing host at Ebbets Field to the two Romanian youths, Peter and Constantin Georgescu, who were recently released from their Communist homeland through the intervention of President Eisenhower. It was their courageous father, Valeriu, who refused to buy his sons’ freedom by spying on the United States. The boys, of course, had the time of their lives even if they were somewhat dazed and mystified by Dodger doings. Certainly they had a fine demonstration of real American spirit.

“Previous incidents of this sort began with the entertaining at an Ebbets Field game of a contingent of Israeli soldiers, who were delighted not only with the game but by gifts of bats and balls. Then there was Alistair (Butch) Forbes, the Scottish boy, brought over specially by Mr. O’Malley because of his expressed desire to see the Dodgers. He has become a walking ambassador for America and particularly for Brooklyn. Also the visit of Faisal II, young King of Iraq, who saw a Dodger game during a tour of the country under State Department auspices. It was one of the highlights of his visit.

“There’s something about Ebbets Field and the Dodgers. Striped pants and cutaways would be out of place there but for an Honorary American Diplomat, 1st Class, we nominate Walter O’Malley!”