This Day in Walter O’Malley History:

  • This note by Shirley Povich in his Washington Post column, “Dodger President Walter O’Malley’s kindness to Brooklyn fans came back to haunt him today. Hoping to give more fans a chance to buy tickets (to the World Series games at Ebbets Field), he ordered them sold singly, instead of in four-game strips. The system got fouled up, and the park which could have been sold out many times over, showed vast empty spaces today.” Shirley Povich, The Washington Post, October 7, 1952  A crowd of 33,195 attended World Series Game 6 at Ebbets Field.

  • The Los Angeles Times writes of Walter O’Malley’s interest in a geodesic dome for the Brooklyn Dodgers. O’Malley, it was said, even checked out the sturdiness of the reinforced plastic panels by throwing rocks and the panel did not break. Los Angeles Times, October 7, 1956

  • The Los Angeles City Council votes 10-4, with one absence, to officially ask the Brooklyn Dodgers to relocate to Los Angeles and bind the city by contract with the Dodgers. The contract required Walter O’Malley and the Dodgers to build and privately finance a 50,000-seat stadium; develop a youth recreation center on the land at $500,000 initially plus annual payments of $60,000 for 20 years; and pay $345,000 in property taxes in 1962, putting the land on the tax rolls for the first time in years. Also, O’Malley and the Dodgers transferred team-owned Wrigley Field, then appraised at $2.2 million, to the city.

  • The Page 1 headline of the Los Angeles Examiner reads, “Dodgers, Sox in Chicago; O’Malley Vows ‘We’ll Win’.” O’Malley was quoted in an article after the Dodgers lost Game 5, 1-0, “We’ll end the agony Thursday (in Game 6 in Chicago). Call today’s game — and a good demonstration of the national pastime, it was — a temporary setback. We have consolidated our forces. Like the folks are saying, it’s ‘On to Chicago’.” Frank Lee Donoghue, Los Angeles Examiner, October 7, 1959  The Dodgers did indeed beat the Chicago White Sox and captured their first World Championship in Los Angeles on October 8.

  • An editorial in The Sporting News recognizes Walter O’Malley and the Dodger organization for the 1959 World Series win over the Chicago White Sox. “Los Angeles waited many years for big league baseball and even longer for its first pennant — but the city which put the word colossal in the dictionary must admit its Dodgers lived up to the definition...All Southern California must be ready to believe by now that this O’Malley has the golden touch. Stymied by legal roadblocks in his plan to build a mammoth stadium as quickly as possible and unwilling to use little Wrigley Field as a stopgap, O’Malley set up shop in the Coliseum, a fine plant for football, track or feeding people to the lions, but certainly no baseball park...Congratulations to O’Malley and his lieutenants, Buzzie Bavasi and Fresco Thompson. Congratulations to Walter Alston and his never-quitting athletes. They richly deserved their victory.” Editorial, The Sporting News, October 7, 1959

  • John T. Ratekin, Landscape Architect — A.I.L.A., who worked with Walter O’Malley on the $1.5 million Dodger Stadium beautification project, writes this letter: “What a thrill it was to hear my name mentioned during the most exciting (World) series ever played in baseball. Thanks to you for the many opportunities you have afforded me to express through the wonderful language of nature and all her beauty. Though the poppies failed, not only me, but everyone whose eyes have viewed the hill sides, I do hope that we may be able to make all the slopes bloom in color, as you so deeply have wished and visualized...Thank you again for all that you have done for me and my associates.”

  • The Los Angeles Dodgers donate 2.66 acres of Dodger property back to the city of Los Angeles, so that the neighboring Police Academy could modernize and expand a new training center. At the City Council meeting, the Public Works Committee report is adopted, thus accepting the grant deed from the Dodgers. A portion of the land (Lots 31 and 41) had been privately purchased by the Dodgers from individual owners.

  • The Dodgers score three runs in the ninth inning after the first two hitters made out to defeat the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 3 of the 1977 National League Championship Series. With two outs and no one on base, Vic Davalillo single, Manny Mota doubled off the left field, Davalillo scoring on a fielding error on the throw to the infield, Mota taking third. Davey Lopes hit an infield single, took second on a throwing error in a pickoff attempt and scored when Bill Russell singled to center. The Dodgers would win the 1977 National League Championship the next day.

  • Bill Russell singled home Ron Cey with two outs in the 10th inning and the Dodgers defeated the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 4 of the 1978 National League Championship Series. It was the first time since 1955-1956 the Dodgers had appeared in consecutive World Series.