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This Day in Walter O’Malley History

June 11

June 11, 1945

Walter O’Malley meets this morning with Brooklyn Dodger ownership partners Branch Rickey and John L. Smith. O’Malley was the Dodger attorney (secretary), while Rickey was club President since 1942. Smith, President of Charles A. Pfizer & Company, was an influential businessman as one of the stockholders of the Brooklyn Trust Company, which oversaw the financial holdings of the Dodgers.

June 11, 1958

When asked by Pasadena Star-News reporter Rube Samuelsen if he felt the Dodgers were off to such a poor start in the 1958 National League race because of the “Proposition B” referendum to approve or reject the previously approved contract between the City of Los Angeles and the Dodgers, Walter O’Malley stated, “Possibly. I’ll have to admit there were a couple of times when I felt like voting ‘No’ myself.”Rube Samuelsen, The Sporting News, June 11, 1958

June 11, 1959

Walter O’Malley is the featured speaker for the 28th Annual Youth Banquet of the Pasadena Junior Chamber of Commerce at the Huntington-Sheraton Hotel. He tells the audience that he “hoped” to start making soundings for the footings for new Dodger Stadium in the next week. Despite legal challenges, O’Malley said he was optimistic for actual work to start by July 1. Los Angeles County Supervisor Warren Dorn introduces O’Malley to the crowd.

June 11, 1962

City of Arlington, Texas Mayor Tom J. Vandergriff visits Dodger Stadium as Dallas-Fort Worth does its due diligence in preparing to attract a major league baseball franchise. Mayor Vandergriff sends a thank you letter to Walter O’Malley stating, “On behalf of our Dallas-Fort Worth group, I wish to advise you as to how very much we enjoyed and were inspired by our visit to your magnificent stadium last Friday. Baseball will forever be in your debt for building such a marvelous facility. Mr. (Buzzie) Bavasi was extremely kind to take so much time from his busy schedule to acquaint us in detail with your stadium construction. His visit with us was most helpful to our group and the consideration of you and your organization will be a great benefit to us as we proceed in our own planning. Again, we salute you for a masterpiece in sports stadium construction!” The American League Washington Senators moved to Texas for the 1972 season.

June 11, 1968

Dodger Executive Vice President and General Manager E. J. “Buzzie” Bavasi writes an Inter-Club Communication memorandum to Walter O’Malley on his last day before becoming President of the expansion San Diego Padres. “I will be at the game tomorrow night but this is my last day at the office,” writes Bavasi. “You know me well enough, Walter, to know I hate ‘good-byes’. It has been a long time. It has been great working with you and for you. Many thanks! Very truly yours, ‘Buzzie’”

June 11, 1974

Sitting with Walter O’Malley in the Chairman’s Box is former Dodger player, coach and Manager Leo Durocher.

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