1953 Brooklyn Dodgers
1953 Brooklyn Dodgers / Franchise: Los Angeles Dodgers / BR Team Page
Clinched Pennant: September 12, 1953, At Milwaukee Braves
Managed by Chuck Dressen
History, Comments, Contributions
Although they did not win the World Series, the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers were the top Dodger team of the 1950s, winning 105 games in the regular season. They finished 13 games ahead of the second team in the league, the Milwaukee Braves. Their winning percentage of .682 (ignoring the 1 tie in their record) is the highest in franchise history, including their years after the move to Los Angeles.
The 1953 Dodgers were an awesome team, with Duke Snider hitting 42 home runs, MVP Roy Campanella with 41 home runs, Gil Hodges with 31 home runs, and Carl Furillo with 21. In terms of batting average, Furillo led the league with a .344 mark, Snider hit .336, Jackie Robinson was at .329, and both Campy and Hodges were also over .300. Rookie Jim Gilliam led the league in triples, had 100 walks and was one of six players to score over 100 runs - the leader on the team being Snider with 132 runs scored. Pee Wee Reese led the team in stolen bases with 22, getting caught only 6 times.
Among lesser-known players on the team was 24-year-old Dick Williams, later to become much more famous as a major league manager.
The pitching staff was as awesome as the hitters. Nobody who appeared in more than 7 games had a losing record. Carl Erskine went 20-6, Russ Meyer was 15-5, Preacher Roe was 11-3, Billy Loes was 14-8, and a 20-year-old Johnny Podres went 9-4. Relievers included Jim Hughes with 9 saves and Clem Labine with 7 saves and an 11-6 record. Don Newcombe, who had won 20 games in 1951, was in the military in 1952 and 1953 or the team might have won even more games!
Among lesser-known pitchers was Glenn Mickens, who pitched in the majors only in 1953 but who later went on to a successful career in Japan as one of the first former major leaguers to play in Nippon Pro Baseball.
Manager Chuck Dressen, who had also led the 1952 team to the pennant, did not return in 1954 due to a contract dispute. He went on to manage for many more years in the majors with other teams, but never again won a pennant.
Awards and Honors
- All-Stars: Roy Campanella, Carl Furillo, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, Jackie Robinson and Duke Snider
- NL MVP: Roy Campanella
- NL Rookie of the Year Award: Jim Gilliam
|1||Dodgers – 5, Yankees – 9||September 30||Yankee Stadium||69,374|
|2||Dodgers – 2, Yankees – 4||October 1||Yankee Stadium||66,786|
|3||Yankees – 2, Dodgers – 3||October 2||Ebbets Field||35,270|
|4||Yankees – 3, Dodgers – 7||October 3||Ebbets Field||36,775|
|5||Yankees – 11, Dodgers – 7||October 4||Ebbets Field||36,775|
|6||Dodgers – 3, Yankees – 4||October 5||Yankee Stadium||62,370|
- Associated Press: "Dodgers Clinch Their 10th Pennant And Second Straight for Dressen", New York Times, September 13, 1953
- Roger Kahn: The Boys of Summer, Perennial Classics, Harper Collins Publishers, New York, NY, 2000, pp. 166-182 (originally published in 1972).
- Roger Kahn: The Era, 1947-1957: When the Yankees, the Giants, and the Dodgers Ruled the World, Bison Books, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, NE, 2002 (originally published in 1993). ISBN 0803278055
- Rudy Marzano: The Last Years of the Brooklyn Dodgers: A History, 1950-1957, McFarland, Jefferson, NC, 2008. ISBN 978-0-7864-3006-2
- Andrew Paul Mele: "Tearin’ Up the Pea Patch": The Brooklyn Dodgers, 1953, McFarland, Jefferson, NC, 2015. ISBN 978-0-7864-9620-4