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This Day in Walter O’Malley History

September 26

September 26, 1958

William Shea of the Los Angeles law firm of McCutchen, Black, Harnagel & Shea writes this letter to Walter O’Malley: “This is just a note to thank you on behalf of Mrs. Shea and myself for a most gracious and entertaining evening last Wednesday. It was a particular pleasure to meet Mrs. O’Malley. I don’t think my wife has had so much fun talking about Brooklyn since she left there.” Less than one year later, Shea announced the formation of a third major league, the Continental League. In 1960, Shea and other Continental League organizers reached an agreement with Major League Baseball to abandon their league, with the addition of four expansion teams to be added to the existing Major Leagues (New York Mets, Houston Astros, Washington Senators, Los Angeles Angels).

September 26, 1962

Walter O’Malley writes a letter to FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover: “My dear Mr. Hoover: I am absolutely thrilled with the autographed copy of a State of Communism. Thank you...Your letter to the (Mayo) Clinic opened a lot of doors but in frankness I must say that the clinic technicians also opened a lot of things. If by chance you plan to be in Los Angeles during the (World) Series, and I hope the Dodgers are also there, let me know as we would like very much to have you in my box if for no other reason than to keep the umpires honest.”

September 26, 1972

In his letter to Ike Ikuhara, assistant to Dodger President Peter O’Malley, Walter O’Malley writes: “My dear Ike: Peter and I are pleased that you have acquired your own house. This will be wonderful for your family. Enclosed is a check for your housewarming. With all good wishes from the Peter and Walter O’Malleys.” O’Malley hired Ikuhara in 1965 and sent him to work with Peter in Spokane, Washington at the Dodgers’ Triple-A affiliate to learn all aspects of the business of baseball. Ikuhara, a graduate of Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan, later worked at Dodger Stadium and became a goodwill ambassador, assisting the O’Malley’s with international relationships. Ikuhara wrote two baseball books printed in Japanese (“The Man Who Survives the Race” in 1984 and “Dodger Way: A Winning Tradition” in 1985). He was posthumously inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002.

September 26, 1975

Burt Hooton wins his 12th consecutive game after Steve Garvey hits a two-out, two-run home run to defeat the Houston Astros, 3-2.

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