Brooklyn and the Dodgers

PETER LASKOWICH

“I strive to link your ordinary experience – what you see, hear and feel – with the history and culture of New York.”

Peter Laskowich: Historian, Lecturer and Guide

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Brooklyn and the Dodgers

Before and with the Dodgers, before and with Jackie Robinson

Most of baseball comes from Brooklyn.

After its creation by gentlemen in Madison Square Park, baseball changed fundamentally in Brooklyn, where the players were rarely gentlemen. There the game became a rousing contest with the object no longer to socialize but to win. This meant exploiting opponents’ weaknesses, leading to the bunt and the stolen base, to the fastball, change-up and curve, to the first paid players and to the first (surreptitiously) professional teams.

This is not to mention the essential contribution of Brooklyn’s team to the nation in 1947. The borough’s longstanding passion for the game and its primary role in baseball’s creation and growth are made clear by the sites of baseball rallies, Dodger celebrations and the first meeting between Branch Rickey and Jackie Robinson.

In its rules and in its most compelling history, baseball is Brooklyn.

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