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Forever Blue: The True Story of Walter O'Malley, Baseball's Most Controversial Owner, and the Dodgers of Brooklyn and Los Angeles Hardcover – March 19, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
Non-baseball fans would no doubt be puzzled by O'Malley's inclusion on the list. But any lover of the game, especially a Brooklyn Dodgers fan, understood the hatred of O'Malley, who had taken the Dodgers to Los Angeles in 1958. In the half-century since, O'Malley has been branded a greedy villain who did more than move a franchise. He was the man who tore the heart out of Brooklyn.
Efforts by O'Malley's descendants and others to rehabilitate his reputation reach their zenith with Michael D'Antonio's new biography of O'Malley, which was produced with the full cooperation of O'Malley's children. I have read extensively in the field of baseball history, especially New York baseball history, and have encountered a lot about O'Malley, but always as a secondary character. It this volume, he takes front and center. I learned a lot about the man I didn't know before, especially his life before he began doing legal work for the Dodgers.
The O'Malley who emerges in these pages isn't a saint, but he fares far better than he does in most baseball literature. The idea that New York power broker Robert Moses was the true villain in the loss of the Dodgers isn't new--books by Neil Sullivan and Michael Shapiro also support that thesis--but it receives reinforcement here.Read more ›
After several decades of ineptness, Larry MacPhail came over from the Cincinnati Reds and led the Dodgers to their first World Series in twenty-one years and only the third ever. Branch Rickey succeeded the old redhead and the Dodgers played in six World Series over ten seasons; finally winning their only title in 1955. Then, after the 1957 season, Walter O'Malley ripped the heart out of Brooklyn and moved the team to Los Angeles. It was a radical move that opened up the west coast to major league baseball. Kansas City had been the westernmost team before the Dodgers and Giants arrived in southern California in 1958.
No one denies that Walter O'Malley, who had pushed Rickey out of the ownership picture, was making money from the team. O'Malley was a shrewd operator whose father had been a Tammany Hall official. But Ebbets Field, opened in 1913, was an aging grand dame. Cars had replaced Trolleys (the team's nickname was shortened from `Trolley Dodgers', referring to the fans who had to avoid being run down at the confluence of trolley tracks outside the stadium) and there was limited parking at the stadium. O'Malley didn't believe Ebbets Field would be a viable option for his team in the future. He had built a winner: now he wanted a new stadium to play in.
Therein lies the rub: there are two sides to this story.Read more ›
In the process O’Malley earned the ire of the whole of Brooklyn, at least partially inappropriately, gained the admiration of movie stars and others who wanted to bask in the glory of the Dodgers as they arrived in luxury in the third inning and left before the end of the seventh, and held the fierce loyalty of such true believers as manager Walter Alston and Buzzie Bavasi. Through all of this, O’Malley created a superb organization that ensured success on the field and generally positive relations outside the lines.
But O’Malley was neither universally liked nor respected; some even considered him evil. I don’t mean the Brooklynites who still condemn him to a special place in hell for spiriting the Dodgers to the West Coast. That story is much more complex than most people appreciate. I am speaking of those inside the MLB power structure.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
written with the full support and blessing of the O'Malley estate. Bear that in mindPublished 4 months ago by ricardo huete
I am having a time reading this. he moved the Bums.... I was not allowed to go to Ebbets field, it was torn down before I could affood to go there... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Karen Kohr-Blinn
It's a little difficult to believe that there has never been a good-sized biography written on the late Walter O'Malley, the now legendary owner of the Brooklyn/Los Angeles... Read morePublished 7 months ago by WDX2BB
Well researched, read easily, missed nothing, and answered questions I wondered about for years. The only thing not here is the fact that the O'Malley's never raised ticket... Read morePublished 7 months ago by czs712
I have read many sports books. This is the best. It vindicates Walter O'Malley.
He really did try to keep the Dodgers in Brooklyn. A MUST READ.
IF YOU LOVED THE BROOKLYN DODGERS AND WHO DOESN'T. YOU HAVE TO HAVE THIS BOOK, IT WASN'T O'MALLEY UNDOING THAT CAUSED BROOKLYN TO LEAVE THE BOROUGHPublished 23 months ago by Edward F.Ulon
Christmas present for my husband. He's been a Dodger's fan all his life (cried when they left Brooklyn). Read morePublished on February 5, 2014 by margarethe
I love how this book puts together a very complete picture of the man, his times, antagonists and the political maneuvering that went into trying to keep the Dodgers in Brooklyn... Read morePublished on September 14, 2013 by Shive 1969
I was in second grade when the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles, a midwesterner that didn't ever care what uniform they wore. Read morePublished on August 20, 2013 by crafty lefthander