Another View of the Giants-Dodgers Face-off - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Another View of the Giants-Dodgers Face-off
Dodgers vs. Giants on October 15, 2021 (Youtube/MLB)

Growing up in New York City, I started playing sand-lot baseball in Central Park at age 9.

I collected hundreds of baseball cards — that my mom threw away (ouch!) while I was in the Navy, serving in the Pacific. (So much for becoming a millionaire.)

I also intensely followed Big League activity. I knew the history of the game and the biography of virtually every player.

Above all, I was a die-hard New York Giant fan!

And, joined in singing the Giant fight song:

We’re calling all fans, all you Giant ball fans.

Come, watch the home team,
going places,
round those bases.
Cheer, for your favorite,
out at Coogan’s Bluff.
You’ll see those Polo Grounders,
do their stuff !

Never mind if we lost to the hated Yankees in two World Series — and then drifted into the second division for years.

The great Mel Ott was a saint.

And, cussing out the Brooklyn Dodgers was a harmless way to rid myself of negative feelings.

When I came home from World War II, the responsibilities that come with becoming an adult forced me to tamp down my interest in baseball. But I still rooted, checked the results every day, and occasionally went to the Polo Grounds to watch the Giants.

Until that cataclysmic day — August 19, 1957 — when my baseball world came crashing down.

I heard the news on the radio. My beloved New York Giants would no longer exist after the season ended!

I was stunned, then angry — very angry.

But quickly realized: Big League Baseball was a business, not a sport. They could move a team across the entire nation and leave its fans stranded.

If I had any doubts, they were eliminated when it was announced that the Dodgers would make the same trans-continental trip.

The Brooklyn faithful were even more pissed off than their Giant rivals. A popular riddle at the time: “If you had a gun with only two bullets and were in a room with Stalin, Hitler and Dodger president Walter O’Malley, who would you shoot?” The answer: “O’Malley twice.”

My response was to stop all interest in professional baseball.

I have not gone to a game in over 60 years — and don’t know the name of a single player in the Big Leagues today.

Now, I love to watch the Little League World Series — a wonderful alternative to Major League Baseball.

Even if I ended my boycott of professional baseball, I’d still prefer watching the kids. There’s excitement, old-fashioned uninhibited fun, and they sometimes make great plays. Their personal stories are amusing or heart warming. And, I can enjoy watching them take a big step toward becoming adults.

Charles Wiley is a veteran journalist who served in World War II and covered 11 wars as a reporter.

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