The Team That Forever Changed Baseball and America


The Team That Forever Changed Baseball and America

The 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers

Edited by Lyle Spatz
Associate Editors Maurice Bouchard and Leonard Levin

Memorable Teams in Baseball History Series

400 pages
67 illustrations, 44 tables


April 2012


$39.95 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

April 2012


$39.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

Of all the teams in the annals of baseball, only a select few can lay claim to historic significance. One of those teams is the 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers, the first racially integrated Major League team of the twentieth century. The addition of Jackie Robinson to its roster changed not only baseball but also the nation. Yet Robinson was just one member of that memorable club, which included Carl Furillo, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, Pete Reiser, Duke Snider, Eddie Stanky, Arky Vaughan, and Dixie Walker. Also present was a quartet of baseball’s most unforgettable characters: co-owners Branch Rickey and Walter O’Malley, suspended manager Leo Durocher, and radio announcer Red Barber.

This book is the first to offer biographies of everyone on that incomparable team as well as accounts of the moments and events that marked the Dodgers’ 1947 season: Commissioner Happy Chandler suspending Durocher, Rickey luring his old friend Burt Shotton out of retirement to replace Durocher, and brilliant outfielder Reiser being sidelined after running into a fence. In spite of all this, the Dodgers went on to win the National League pennant over the heavily favored St. Louis Cardinals. And of course, there is the biggest story of the season, where history and biography coalesce: Jackie Robinson, who overcame widespread hostility to become Rookie of the Year—and to help the Dodgers set single-game attendance records in cities around the National League.

Author Bio

Lyle Spatz’s many books include Dixie Walker: A Life in Baseball and (with coauthor Steve Steinberg) 1921: The Yankees, the Giants, and the Battle for Baseball Supremacy in New York, winner of the Seymour Medal (Nebraska, 2010).


"Though there have been numerous books on the Dodgers of that era and on the notable personalities, this is the first to present biographies of every member of the organization in that famous baseball year."—Margart Heilbrun, Library Journal

"The Team That Forever Changed Baseball and America: The 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers is stunning in its thorough look at every player, coach and front office member of the team. After all, Robinson and Rickey had the leading roles, but they did not make history by themselves."—Bob D'Angelo, Tampa Bay Online

"This extraordinarily detailed account of a pivotal year in Dodger history would make a fine Father's Day gift for the nostalgic Dodger fan."—Nancy Wong Bryan, Dugout Club Insider

"For Dodger fans, having a chance to relive this historic season, to go beyond the surface of Robinson breaking the color barrier, makes this book a wonderful resource. Fans of baseball in general, especially those of an age that can remember some of these names and players from their parents, will find it enjoyable as well."—C70 at the Bat

"A welcomed contribution to baseball history, this publication contains extremely well written and researched essays presented in a user-friendly format. With their broad appeal to sports historians and baseball fans, the next volumes in this series are eagerly anticipated."—Gregory H. Wolf, Journal of Sport History

"Dodger devotees, baseball fans, historians, and others will find this a fascinating trip into yesteryear."—Duane A. Smith, The Historian

Table of Contents


      Mark Langill



      Lyle Spatz

1. How the 1947 Team Was Built

      Lyle Spatz

2. Spring Training in Havana

      Irv Goldfarb

3. Jackie Robinson

      Rick Swaine

4. Branch Rickey

      Andy McCue

5. Leo Durocher

      Jeffrey Marlett

6. Kirby Higbe

      Ralph Berger

7. Bobby Bragan

      David L. Fleitz and Maurice Bouchard

8. Dixie Walker

      Lyle Spatz

9. Carl Furillo

      John T. Saccoman

10. The Suspension of Leo Durocher

      Jeffrey Marlett

11. Branch Rickey and the Mainstream Press

      Joe Marren

12. Timeline, April 15<EN>April 30

      Lyle Spatz

13. Ebbets Field, 1947

      Bob McGee

14. Jackie Robinson's First Game

      Lyle Spatz

15. Clyde Sukeforth

      James L. Ray

16. Burt Shotton

      Rob Edelman

17. Ray Blades

      Russell Wolinsky

18. Spider Jorgensen

      William H. Johnson

19. Hal Gregg

      James L. Ray

20. Timeline, May 1<EN>May 20

      Lyle Spatz

21. Hank Behrman

      Rob Edelman

22. Rube Melton

      Jack V. Morris

23. Jackie Robinson and the Jews

      Rabbi Rebecca T. Alpert

24. Timeline, May 21<EN>June 15

      Lyle Spatz

25. Gene Hermanski

      Leonard Levin and Robert H. Schaefer

26. Hugh Casey

      Russell Wolinsky

27. Rex Barney

      Don Harrison

28. Tommy Brown

      C. Paul Rogers III

29. Harry Taylor

      Adam J. Ulrey

30. Timeline, June 16<EN>June 29

      Lyle Spatz

31. Ed Chandler

      James L. Ray

32. Marv Rackley

      Rob Neyer

33. Gil Hodges

      John T. Saccoman

34. George Dockins

      Russell Wolinsky

35. Eddie Stanky

      Alex Edelman

36. Timeline, June 30<EN>July 14

      Lyle Spatz

37. Arky Vaughan

      Ralph C. Moses

38. Duke Snider

      Warren Jacobs

39. Ralph Branca

      Paul Hirsch

40. Clyde King

      James L. Ray

41. Jake Pitler

      Stanley H. Bard

42. Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1947 All-Star Game

      Lyle Spatz

43. Timeline, July 15<EN>July 31

      Lyle Spatz

44. Pee Wee Reese

      Rob Edelman

45. Bruce Edwards

      Ralph Berger

46. The Protested Game of July 20, 1947

      David W. Smith

47. Joe Hatten

      Joseph Wancho

48. Timeline, August 1<EN>August 17

      Lyle Spatz

49. Howie Schultz

      Stew Thornley

50. Pete Reiser

      Mark Stewart

51. Tommy Tatum

      Dan Mullen

52. Timeline, August 18<EN>August 31

      Lyle Spatz

53. Eddie Miksis

      Peter M. Gordon

54. Stan Rojek

      Edward W. Veit

55. Dan Bankhead

      Rory Costello

56. Timeline, September 1<EN>September 19

      Lyle Spatz

57. Phil Haugstad

      Bob Buege

58. Don Lund

      Jerry Nechal

59. Vic Lombardi

      Lawrence Baldassaro

60. Jack Banta

      Jimmy Keenan

61. Johnny Van Cuyk

      David Greisen

62. Timeline, September 20<EN>September 28

      Lyle Spatz

63. Willie Ramsdell

      John Harry Stahl

64. Dick Whitman

      Ted D. Smith

65. Erv Palica

      Mark Stewart

66. Ed Stevens

      Jim Kreuz

67. Walter O'Malley

      Andy McCue

68. John L. Smith

      Andy McCue

69. Red Barber

      Warren Corbett

70. Connie Desmond

      Rob Edelman

71. Advertising and the Dodgers in 1947

      Roberta J. Newman

72. The 1947 World Series

      Tom Hawthorn

73. Al Gionfriddo

      Rory Costello

74. Cookie Lavagetto

      Mathew Sisson

75. Al Gionfriddo's Memorable Game Six Catch

      Rory Costello

76. Lavagetto Ends Bevens's No-Hit Attempt

      Joe Dittmar

77. Most Valuable Player Award

      Lyle Spatz

78. Rookie of the Year Award

      Lyle Spatz

79. Cy Young Award

      Lyle Spatz

80. Dodgers Attendance in 1947

      John Pastier

81. Ownership Issues in Brooklyn

      Andy McCue


      Lyle Spatz

Notes and References



2013 Ron Gabriel Award

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