Friday, July 13, 2018

Shot Heard 'Round The World Relic Available at Goldin Auction

Dodgers fans both young and old know this story well.

In 1951 the Brooklyn team held a 13.5 game lead over the New York Giants with 44 games left to play. Remarkably, this lead wasn't enough. The Giants would pull off a monumental run that saw them win 37 of their final 44 games to pull into a tie with Brooklyn at the end of the regular season.

Quickly, a three-game playoff series was scheduled to determine the pennant winner. The Dodgers would lose the first game at Ebbets Field, 1-3, then win game two at the Polo Grounds, 10-0. The third and deciding game, played in upper Manhattan, came down to the wire. With the Dodgers leading 4-1 in the ninth the Giants rallied to score four runs to win, 5-4 -- with the dagger to the heart coming on a walk-off three-run home run by Bobby Thompson off of Dodger hurler Ralph Branca.

With that the "Shot Heard 'Round The World" was born.

The item seen in this post, currently available at Goldin Auctions, is the home plate used at the Polo Grounds that day. (Auction Link) It was originally dug out of the stadium and kept by former New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers groundskeeper Matty Schwab.

I have no idea what something like this is worth. Right now it has an opening bid of $5,000 with no takers yet. What I do know it that it is museum worthy. Heck, as a Dodger fan and as someone who recoils in disgust whenever I hear that horrid broadcast of the walk-off (link here), I wouldn't mind if this was displayed in a Dodger-themed museum.

It's a historically significant artifact for the franchise even if it denotes a low point for the team.

On the other hand, it does provide an opportunity to remind everyone that the Giants cheated. For those final games they had a spy perched in centerfield at the Polo Grounds with binoculars relaying pitching signs to their batters. How effective this means of cheating was, I don't really know. I just like to bring it up.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

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