Punctuating this battle, you'll meet ultimate fans like Hilda Chester.
You'll hear how Hilda changed the course of a game. You'll meet the
surviving members of the Dodger Sym-Phony and hear the cacophony that
the air at Ebbets Field.
The rivalry between Dodgers and Giants was intense. The Dodgers nicknamed
the Polo Grounds after the most dreaded disease of the time -- the Polio
Grounds. The Giants had the same sentiment toward Ebbets Field. Willie
tells how he had his tires slashed during a game at Ebbets.
The last game of the 1951 playoff is the most famous game between the two
teams, and Russ Hodges' play-by-play is the most famous, but in this part
you'll hear Red Barber's play-by-play of Bobby Thomson's home run. Larry
King calls it the best announcing job he ever heard. After the home run,
was silent for 59 seconds. The silence best symbolized the disappointment
Dodger fans would feel for generations to come.
Back in LA, Roz Wyman, LA City Councilwoman, had to deal with bomb threats
and death threats in trying to lure the elusive O'Malley to the West Coast.
Arthur Daley of the New York Times said, "Only the elastic O'Malley can
two horses in opposite directions."
This segment will pick up the political battles between O'Malley and City
Hall and how O'Malley influenced Giants owner Horace Stoneham to move to
Francisco. See how O'Malley, the ultimate visionary, envisioned Skiatron,
the precursor to cable television. O'Malley used this as bait to lure
Stoneham to the west coast. Of course, cable wouldn't happen for another
years. Not only did Stoneham build one of the ugliest ball parks in
baseball, but Candlestick Park is built next to San Francisco Bay, probably
one of the most inhospitable settings in the major leagues.
One historian said, "Brooklyn was the biggest and most dramatic 'home
on earth." This is the story of a literal and figurative home town and its
team and what happens to the town when the team is no more. "A lot of the
change in America, the disappearance of the American dream," says Robert
Caro, "is really summarized in this one baseball team."