The end of the trail came at the Stadium yesterday.
Smokey Alston's Brooks, with Johnny Podres tossing a
brilliant shut-out, turned back Casey Stengel's Yankees,
2 to 0, in the seventh and deciding game of the 1955
This gave the
National League champions the series, 4 games to 3 . As the jubilant
victors almost smothered their 23-year-old left-handed pitcher from
Witherbee, N.Y., a roaring crow of 62,465 joined in sounding off a
thunderous ovation. Not even the staunchest American League die-hard
could begrudge Brooklyn its finest hour.
in the past had the Dodgers been thwarted in their efforts to capture
baseball's most sought prize ― the last five
times by these same Bombers.
When the goal
finally was achieved the lid blew off in Brooklyn, while experts, poring
into the records, agreed nothing quite so spectacular had been
accomplished before. For this was the first time a team had won a
seven-game world series after losing the first two games.
who had vanquished the Yankees in the third game as the series moved to
Ebbets Field last Friday, became the first Brooklyn pitcher to win two
games in one series.
a seasoned campaigner who was the Yanks' "comeback hero of the year,"
carried the Bombers' hopes in this dramatic struggle in which victory
would have given them their seventeenth series title. But Byrne, whose
southpaw giants had turned back the Dodgers in the second encounter,
could not quite cope with the youngster pitted against him.
In the fourth
inning a two-bagger by Roy Campanella and a single by Gil Hodges gave
the Brooks their first run.
In the sixth
a costly Yankee error helped fill the bases. It forced the withdrawal of
Byrne, though in all he had given only three hits.
called on his right-handed relief hurler, Bob Grim.
Bob did well
enough. But he couldn't prevent Hodges from lifting a long sacrifice fly
to center that drove in Pee Wee Reese with the Brooks' second run of the
with this additional tally, Podres then blazed the way through a
succession of thrills while a grim band of Dodgers fought with the
tenacity of inspired men to hold the advantage to the end.
the final out was a grounder by Elston Howard to Reese, the 36-year-old
shortstop and captain of the Flock. Ever since 1941 had the Little
Colonel from Kentucky been fighting those Yankees. Five times had he
been forced to accept the loser's share.
Many a heart
in the vast arena doubtless skipped a beat as Pee Wee scooped up the
ball and fired it to first. It was a bit low and wide. But Hodges, the
first sacker, reached out and grabbed it inches off the ground. Gil
would have stretched halfway across the Bronx for that one.
Thus to the
43-year-old Walter E. Alston of Darrtown, Ohio, goes the distinction of
piloting a Dodger team to its first world title. As a player, Smokey had
appeared in the majors only long enough to receive one time at bat with
the Cardinals. What is more, he ruefully recalls, he struck out.
to the minors soon after that, Alston didn't appear in the majors again
until he was named manager of the Brooks in 1954.
Yet, in his
second year he not only led the Dodgers to an overwhelming triumph for
the National League pennant but also attained a prize that had eluded
such managerial greats as the late Uncle Wilbert Robinson, Leo Durocher,
Burt Shotton and Chuck Dressen.
made their first world series appearance in 1916. They lost to the
Boston Red Sox. In 1920 they bowed to the Cleveland Indians. Then in
1941, '47, '49, '52 and '53 they went down before the mighty Bombers.
As for the
Yanks the defeat brought to an end a string of world series successes
without parallel. Victors in sixteen classics, they suffered only their
fifth setback. It was their first defeat under Charles Dillon Stengel,
who bagged five in a row from 1949 through 1953.
Cards Did Trick
Back in 1921
and 1922 the Bombers lost to John McGraw's Giants. Until yesterday the
Cardinals had been the only other National League champions to stop
them. St. Louis won in 1926 and again in 1942. Since then the Yankees
had bagged seven classics until they broke their spell.
baseball weather again greeted the belligerents as the battle lines were
drawn for this final conflict.
though smaller than for the three previous Stadium games, contributed
$407,549 to the series pool, to help set a world series "gate" total of
$2,337,515. This, of course, is apart from the addition revenues derived
from radio and television.
players took the field there was a final check on the invalids, of whom
both sides provided more than a fair share.
was back in the Dodger line-up. Duke had gone out of the sixth game on
Monday with a twisted knee when he stepped in a small hole fielding a
pop fly in center field.
Robinson, who had fought so valiantly for the Brooks in the three
straight games they won in Ebbets Field, had to remain on the sidelines.
He was suffering from a strained Achilles tendon in his right leg. So
Don Hoak played third.
In the Yankee
camp, Hank Bauer, the ex-marine, was in right field again despite a
pulled thigh muscle. But Mickey Mantle, a serious loss to the Bombers
throughout the series was still out with his painfully torn leg muscle.
He did manage to get into the game for one pinch-hit performance. His
best was a towering, though harmless, pop fly.
Yanks, who on Monday had squared the series by crushing the left-handed
Karl Spooner with a five-run first-inning blast, were again being
confronted by a southpaw, Stengel strung along with his right-handed
batting power. But defensively this was to prove costly. For it was Bill
Skowron, his first-sacker, who made the damaging fielding slip in the
innings Podres and Byrne maintained a scoreless deadlock. Skowron, a
right-handed hitter who had stunned the Brooks with his three-run homer
into the right-field stands Monday, gave them another mild jolt in the