Short Stops

Who Was That Man?

The first ballpark that Walter O’Malley built was 5,000-seat Holman Stadium in Vero Beach, FL in 1953, teaming with highly-regarded designer Capt. Emil Praeger. O’Malley named the stadium in honor of Bud Holman, a Vero Beach businessman who was responsible for first bringing the Dodgers to the site of an abandoned U.S. Naval Air Base for spring training in 1948.

Dedication ceremonies were held on March 11, 1953 and O’Malley could not have been happier with Holman Stadium and its postcard-perfect setting on the Dodgertown grounds.

In preparation for the big day, the Vero Beach Press-Journal reported that “we spied an extra workman among the ground crew working on the infield the other day. The fellow was busy raking the soil part of the new infield. He looked familiar to us and he rightly should...He was Walter F. O’Malley, president of the Dodgers.”

Source: Bob Curzon, The Dodger Bullpen, Vero Beach Press-Journal, March 12, 1953

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