Sports - Brooklyn Dodgers - The Boys of Summer 1952-53 (Any Medium): Doyle Collection Image Gallery

Joseph Black (February 8, 1924 – May 17, 2002) was an American right-handed pitcher in Negro League and Major League Baseball for the Brooklyn Dodgers, Cincinnati Redlegs, and Washington Senators who became the first black pitcher to win a World Series game, in 1952. Black helped the Baltimore Elite Giants of the Negro Leagues win two championships in seven years. He and Jackie Robinson pushed for a pension plan for Negro League players and instrumental in the inclusion of players who played before 1944. Black then played for a year in the Brooklyn Dodgers' minor league system. The Dodgers promoted Black to the major leagues in 1952 at 28, five years after teammate Jackie Robinson broke baseball's color barrier. He roomed with Robinson while with Brooklyn. Black was chosen Rookie of the Year after winning 15 games and saving 15 others for the National League champions. He had a 2.15 ERA but, with 142 innings pitched, fell eight innings short of winning the ERA title. Strapped for pitching, Dodgers manager Chuck Dressen brought Black out of the bullpen and started him three times in seven days in the 1952 World Series against the New York Yankees. He won the opener with a six-hitter over Allie Reynolds, 4–2, then lost the fourth game, 2–0, and the seventh, 4–2. The spring after the World Series, Dressen urged Black to add some pitches to his strong slowball, which was his favorite pitch. In six seasons, he compiled a 30–12 record, half of his wins coming in his rookie season.

Roy Campanella broke into baseball with the Baltimore Elite Giants of the Negro National League at age 16 and joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1948. He was selected to eight All-Star Games and played in five World Series. Strong defensively, "Campy" also was a star with the bat, setting then-records for single-season (41) and career (242) home runs by a catcher. He won three National League Most Valuable Player Awards (1951. 1953 and 1955). His playing career was cut short by an automobile accident in 1958. Elected 1969.

William Richard Cox (August 29, 1919 – March 30, 1978) was an American professional baseball third baseman and shortstop. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Brooklyn Dodgers, and Baltimore Orioles. He played for the Newport Buffaloes high school team. Signed as an amateur free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1940, Cox made his MLB debut with the Pirates on September 20, 1941, playing in ten games at shortstop that season[1] before serving in the military during World War II. After returning to the Pirates, he was the starting shortstop in 1946 and 1947 before being traded to the Brooklyn Dodgers on December 8, 1947, along with Preacher Roe and Gene Mauch, for Dixie Walker, Hal Gregg and Vic Lombardi. Cox was the third baseman of a Dodgers infield in the 1950s that included Gil Hodges, Jackie Robinson and Pee Wee Reese. In the 1953 World Series, Cox had a two-run double in Game 2 and a three-run homer in Game 5 against the New York Yankees. He batted .304 for the Series and led Brooklyn in runs batted in with six. Cox was an infield starter (principally at third base) and leadoff hitter for the Baltimore Orioles for the first half of 1955, but after being pulled for a pinch runner on June 11, was traded at the trading deadline, June 16. Cox, however, would not report to his new team, the Cleveland Indians, reigning American League champions. Even after a meeting with Indians' manager Al López, Cox resolved to retire and did so on June 17. After Cox retired, the Orioles did not settle on a starting third baseman until Brooks Robinson won the job in 1957. The Orioles used 13 third basemen in 1955.

Carl Daniel Erskine (born December 13, 1926) is a former right-handed starting pitcher in Major League Baseball who played his entire career for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1948 through 1959. He was a pitching mainstay on Dodger teams which won five National League pennants, peaking with a 1953 season in which he won 20 games and set a World Series record with 14 strikeouts in a single game. Erskine pitched two of the NL's seven no-hitters during the 1950s. He broke into the majors a year before Don Newcombe, and from 1948–50 was used primarily as a reliever, going 21-10. In 1951, he mixed 19 starts with 27 relief appearances, and went 16-12. Erskine was 14-6 in 1952 with a career-best 2.70 earned run average, then had his 20-win season in 1953, leading the league with a .769 winning percentage along with 187 strikeouts and 16 complete games, all career highs. This was followed by 18-15 in 1954, posting career highs in starts (37) and innings (260-1/3), then by 11-8 in 1955 and 13-11 in 1956. When Newcombe was pitching in the ninth inning of the third game of the playoff with the New York Giants on October 3, 1951, Erskine and Ralph Branca were warming up in the bullpen. On the recommendation of pitching coach Clyde Sukeforth, who thought that Branca had better stuff, Newcombe was relieved by Branca, who then gave up the game-winning home run to Bobby Thomson. Whenever Erskine was asked what his best pitch was, he replied, "The curveball I bounced in the Polo Grounds bullpen in 1951." Erskine, author of two no-hitters (against the Chicago Cubs on June 19, 1952 and the New York Giants on May 12, 1956), was a member of the beloved Dodgers team which won the 1955 World Series for the franchise's first Series title. He appeared in eleven World Series games (1949–52–53-55-56), and made the NL All-Star team in 1954. His 14 strikeouts as the winner of Game 3 of the 1953 Fall Classic – including striking out the side in the ninth inning – broke the Series record of 13 held by Howard Ehmke (1929, Game 1), and stood for 10 years until Sandy Koufax struck out 15 New York Yankees in the first game of the 1963 World Series; but he was ineffective in Games 1 and 6, although he was not charged with the losses. From 1951 through 1956, Erskine won 92 games while losing only 58, which helped the Dodgers to four pennants during the "Boys of Summer" era. During his years in Brooklyn, he was affectionately known as "Oisk" by the fans with their Brooklyn accents. In 1957, Erskine moved to Los Angeles with the team the following year, but lasted only a season and a half. He made his final appearance on June 14, 1959. In a twelve-season career, he posted a 122-78 (.610) record with 981 strikeouts and a 4.00 ERA in 1718.2 innings pitched.

Carl Anthony Furillo (March 8, 1922 – January 21, 1989), nicknamed "The Reading Rifle" and "Skoonj", was an American professional baseball right fielder who played in Major League Baseball (MLB), spending his entire career with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers. A member of seven National League (NL) champions from 1947 to 1959 inclusive, Furillo batted over .300 five times, winning the 1953 batting title, with a .344 average — then the highest by a right-handed hitting Dodger since 1900. Noted for his strong and accurate throwing arm, he recorded 10 or more assists in nine consecutive seasons, leading the league twice, and retired with the fifth-most games in right field (1,408) in NL history. Arriving in the major leagues in 1946, he batted .295 for the 1947 NL pennant winners, finishing the year ninth in the league with 88 runs batted in. He was one of the key members on the Dodgers' 1949 champions, hitting .322 (4th in the NL) with 18 home runs, and placing among the league's top ten players in RBI (106), slugging average (.506), hits (177), runs (95), triples (10) and total bases (278); he finished sixth in the voting for the MVP Award. In 1950 he batted .305 (7th in the league) with 18 home runs, 106 RBI, and a career-high 99 runs. He achieved a personal best with 197 hits, finishing third in the NL for the second year in a row, for the 1951 team which lost a legendary pennant playoff to the New York Giants; he also batted .295 (9th in the NL) with 91 RBI and 93 runs. In that year he set a team record with 667 at bats, exceeding Ivy Olson's 1921 total of 652; Maury Wills broke his mark with 695 in 1962. He became skilled at negotiating balls hit off the high right-field wall at Ebbets Field, and after he led the NL in assists in both 1950 (18) and 1951 (24), opposing runners were increasingly reluctant to challenge his arm. On August 27, 1951, he threw out Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Mel Queen by two feet at first base after Queen had apparently singled into right field. Furillo batted only .247 for the 1952 pennant winners, though he was selected to his first All-Star team. Diagnosed with cataracts, he had surgery in the offseason and returned with perhaps his best season, winning the batting title and collecting 21 home runs and 92 RBI with a career-best 38 doubles (3rd in the NL). His .344 average was the highest by a right-handed Dodgers hitter since Oyster Burns hit .354 in 1894; Tommy Davis would better him with a .346 mark in 1962. He was again named an All-Star, ending the year fifth in the league in slugging (.580), and finished ninth in the MVP balloting.

Many feel Hodges should be in the Hall of Fame but it has not happened yet. He would play for the Brooklyn Dodgers and LA Dodgers winning 3 World Series and would be selected to 8 All Star Teams. He would also lead the NY Mets to their first World Series defeating the heavily favored Baltimore Orioles.

Clement Walter Labine (August 6, 1926 – March 2, 2007) was an American right-handed relief pitcher in Major League Baseball best known for his years with the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1950 to 1960. As a key member of the Dodgers in the early 1950s, he helped the team to its first World Series title in 1955 with a win and a save in four games. He is one of six players in MLB history to have won back-to back World Series championships on different teams, the other five being Ben Zobrist, Jake Peavy, Jack Morris, Bill Skowron, and Don Gullett. He held the National League record for career saves from 1958 until 1962; his 96 career saves ranked fourth in Major League history when he retired. He also set a Dodgers franchise record of 425 career games pitched. Labine accompanied the Dodgers to Los Angeles when they relocated after the 1957 season, and in 1958 surpassed Al Brazle's NL record of 60 career saves. In 1959 he broke Brickyard Kennedy's franchise record of 381 games pitched; the Dodgers won the World Series again that year, defeating the Chicago White Sox, although Labine pitched only one inning in Game 1's blowout loss. His career appeared to be in jeopardy in 1960 when the Dodgers traded him to the Detroit Tigers in June after Labine had compiled an earned run average of 5.82. The Tigers subsequently released him on August 15, 1960 after he pitched 14 games for them, going 0–3, with an earned run average of 5.12. The Pittsburgh Pirates signed Labine the following day. The Pirates were in the National League pennant race and needed another right-handed reliever to complement Roy Face. Labine proved to be a valuable addition to the Pirates' bullpen. In 15 games for the Pirates through the remainder of the season, he compiled a record of 3–0 with 3 saves and an earned run average of 1.48 as he helped the Pirates win the National League pennant and go on to the 1960 World Series. But Labine appeared only in three blowout losses during the Series win over the New York Yankees. After remaining with the Pirates in 1961, he ended his career with the New York Mets, pitching in three games during the Mets' debut 1962 season, including an inning in the Mets' very first game. Later that year, the Pirates' Roy Face passed Labine's NL mark of 94 career saves. Over all or parts of 13 seasons, Labine appeared in 513 games, winning 77 and losing 56 (.579) with a 3.63 earned run average. He appeared in 13 World Series games, winning two and losing two, with a 3.16 ERA. His 96 career saves then trailed only Johnny Murphy (107), Ellis Kinder (102) and Firpo Marberry (101) in major league history. In 1966, Labine's Dodger career records of 425 games pitched and 83 saves were broken by Don Drysdale and Ron Perranoski respectively.

Andrew Pafko (February 25, 1921 – October 8, 2013) was an American professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Chicago Cubs (1943–51), Brooklyn Dodgers (1951–52), and Milwaukee Braves (1953–59). He batted and threw right-handed and played center field. Pafko was born in Boyceville, Wisconsin. In his 17-year MLB career, he was an All-Star for four seasons and was a .285 hitter with 213 home runs and 976 RBI, in 1852 games. In 1999, he was named to the Chicago Cubs All-Century Team. In 1941, Pafko played on the Green Bay Blue Sox team in the Wisconsin State League. He had 12 home runs, 66 RBIs, while batting .349 on the team that won the league championship. He played another season in the minor league before debuting in the major league in 1943 with the Chicago Cubs. Nicknamed "Handy Andy", Pafko was a popular player well known for good hitting and fielding, and contributed to championship-caliber teams in three different cities. He played for the Chicago Cubs during their 1945 World Series appearance. After Cubs third baseman Stan Hack retired the following year, Pafko replaced him at third base long enough to be almost named an All-Star there. MLB cancelled the All-Star Game and selection that season due to the war and the Associated Press sportswriters named Pafko as one of their All-Stars. Pafko did become a four-time consecutive All-Star from 1947 through 1950, making him one of the few players to achieve All-Star status in both the infield and outfield. Pafko was traded to the Brooklyn Dodgers in June 1951 during the middle of the season; he was the left fielder when Bobby Thomson hit the "Shot Heard 'Round the World." Pafko returned home when he was traded to the Boston Braves before the start of the 1953 season, becoming the only Wisconsin native on the Braves roster when they arrived in Milwaukee and participating in their strong contending teams there, including the 1957 World Series champions. Pafko started in the first game at Milwaukee County Stadium on April 3, 1953. A devout Slovak Lutheran, he was an instant favorite with Milwaukee's large Eastern European community. In the mid-1950s, the Milwaukee area Lutherans had an "Andy Pafko Night" and gave him a new car.

Harold "Pee Wee" Reese captained the dominant Brooklyn Dodgers teams of the 1950s - a symbol of strength and unity both on and off the field. An outstanding defensive player, Reese led the National League in put-outs four times, double plays twice, fielding percentage and assists once each, while forming one of baseball's top double-paly combinations with Jackie Robinson. Their relationship drew national attention during Robinson's 1947 barrier-breaking season when Reese offered public support to baseball's first modern African-American teammate. Elected 1984.

In 1947 Jackie Robinson would break the major leagues' "unwritten" color barrier in baseball debuting with the Brooklyn Dodgers and becoming the first black player in the 20th century. Robinson was selected by Brooklyn Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey not only for the skills he brought to the field, but also for those he possessed off it. The Dodgers picked the right player as while you can sure the way fans and players treated him it hurt him by season end he would win them over leading the way for other players. In 1997, Robinson was honored posthumously when Major League Baseball universally retired his uniform number 42. Elected 1962.

In 1947 Jackie Robinson would break the major leagues' "unwritten" color barrier in baseball debuting with the Brooklyn Dodgers and becoming the first black player in the 20th century. Robinson was selected by Brooklyn Dodgers general manager Branch Rickey not only for the skills he brought to the field, but also for those he possessed off it. The Dodgers picked the right player as while you can sure the way fans and players treated him it hurt him by season end he would win them over leading the way for other players. In 1997, Robinson was honored posthumously when Major League Baseball universally retired his uniform number 42. Elected 1962.

Elwin Charles Roe (February 26, 1916 – November 9, 2008), known as Preacher Roe, was a Major League Baseball pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals (1938), Pittsburgh Pirates (1944–47), and Brooklyn Dodgers (1948–54). In the summer of 1938, Roe was signed by Branch Rickey, then general manager for the St. Louis Cardinals. Roe pitched in one game for the team that season, giving up six hits, two walks, and four runs in 2? innings. He spent the next five seasons in the Cardinals' minor league system before being traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 30, 1943 in exchange for pitcher Johnny Podgajny, outfielder Johnny Wyrostek and cash. As a fastball pitcher with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Roe had a record of 13-11 with a 3.11 earned run average in 1944 and a 14-13 record with a 2.87 ERA in 1945. His 148 strikeouts in the 1945 season led the National League and he was selected for (but did not play in) the 1945 All-Star Game. While coaching high school basketball after the 1945 season, Roe suffered a fractured skull in a fight with a referee.[2] His pitching suffered in the following seasons, with his record falling to 3-8 and an ERA of 5.14 in 1946, and deteriorated further in 1947, as he finished the season with a record of 4-15 and an ERA of 5.25. Ralph Kiner, he said, stood in a hole in the outfield. He caught balls hit to his hole but otherwise did not field. One can get a great flavor of 'Ole Preach', as he was called, by reading Roger Kahn's book The Boys of Summer. Branch Rickey, the general manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers, remembered Roe from Rickey's time in the Cardinals' management and engineered a trade.[2] On December 8, 1947, the Dodgers got Roe, and infielders Billy Cox and Gene Mauch in exchange for pitchers Hal Gregg and Vic Lombardi and outfielder Dixie Walker. With his health improving and with the spitball now in his repertoire, Roe had much success with the Dodgers, including winning records in his first six seasons with the team. Roe finished the 1948 season with a record of 12-8 and an ERA of 2.63. Selected to play in the 1949 All-Star Game, Roe pitched in the ninth inning, retiring all three batters he faced. He improved further in the 1949 season, finishing with a 15-6 record and a 2.79 ERA. He pitched for the first time in the postseason in the 1949 World Series, winning Game 2 with a six-hit complete game shutout against the New York Yankees that the Dodgers won 1-0, their only win in the five game series. Roe posted an exceptional 22-3 won-loss record for the Dodgers in 1951, becoming only the fifth pitcher since 1916 to begin the season 10-0. Roe was an exceptional pitcher, but notorious as a poor hitter, finishing his career with a .110 batting average. In 1953, he hit a home run at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh, the only one of his career,

George Thomas "Shotgun" Shuba (December 13, 1924 – September 29, 2014) was a utility outfielder and left-handed pinch hitter in Major League Baseball who played seven seasons for the Brooklyn Dodgers. His seven seasons included three World Series as well as a World Series championship in 1955. He was the first National League player to hit a pinch-hit home run in a World Series game. Shuba is often remembered for his symbolic role in breaking down Major League Baseball's tenacious "color barrier" While playing for the AAA Montreal Royals in 1946, Shuba offered a congratulatory handshake to teammate Jackie Robinson, who went on to become the first African American to play in a major league game since the late 19th century.[2] The moment was captured in a well-known photograph dubbed A Handshake for the Century for featuring the first interracial handshake in a professional baseball game. In the early 1970s, Shuba's major league career was featured in a chapter of Roger Kahn's The Boys of Summer, a tribute to the 1950s Brooklyn Dodgers.[1] Kahn observed in his book that Shuba earned his nickname, "Shotgun", by "spraying line drives with a swing so compact that it appeared as natural as a smile". After signing a contract with the Dodgers, Shuba played for farm teams in New Orleans and Mobile.[8] He later recalled that his father opposed the move, because he "thought I should go and work in the mills like him".[7] Shuba pursued his goal, however, developing his "natural" swing by practicing for hours with a rope that was tied to the ceiling. He made knots in the rope where the strike zone would be and swung a bat at the rope 600 times a day. This rigorously observed ritual prepared Shuba to compete in the major leagues, where his powerful line drives later earned him the nickname, "Shotgun". On the afternoon of April 18, 1946, Robinson became the first black player in modern organized baseball when he made his debut with the Dodgers’ Montreal Royals farm team in their International League opener against the Jersey City Giants. In the third inning, Robinson hit a three-run homer over the left-field fence. When he completed his trip around the bases, Shuba, the Royals’ left fielder and their next batter, shook his hand. Congratulating a home-run hitter was a commonplace ritual, but Shuba's welcome to a smiling Robinson was captured in an Associated Press photograph that has endured as a portrait of racial tolerance.

One of the greatest of the Perez Steele series of cards, this one show casing Mantle, Mays and Snider.