1956 World Series
Team (Wins) Manager(s) Season
New York Yankees (4) Casey Stengel 97–57, .630, GA: 9
Brooklyn Dodgers (3) Walter Alston 93–61, .604, GA: 1
DatesOctober 3–10
VenueEbbets Field (Brooklyn)
Yankee Stadium (New York)
MVPDon Larsen (New York)
UmpiresBabe Pinelli (NL), Hank Soar (AL), Dusty Boggess (NL), Larry Napp (AL), Tom Gorman (NL: outfield only), Ed Runge (AL: outfield only)
Hall of FamersYankees:
Casey Stengel (manager)
Yogi Berra
Whitey Ford
Mickey Mantle
Enos Slaughter
Dodgers:
Walt Alston (manager)
Roy Campanella
Don Drysdale
Gil Hodges
Sandy Koufax (DNP)
Pee Wee Reese
Jackie Robinson
Duke Snider
Broadcast
TelevisionNBC
TV announcersVin Scully and Mel Allen
RadioMutual
Radio announcersBob Wolff and Bob Neal
← 1955 World Series 1957 →

The 1956 World Series of Major League Baseball was played between the New York Yankees of the American League and the defending champion Brooklyn Dodgers of the National League in October 1956. The series was a rematch of the 1955 World Series. It was the final Subway Series in the Fall Classic until 44 years later in 2000, as the Dodgers and the New York Giants moved to California following the 1957 season. Additionally, it was the last time a New York City team represented the National League in a World Series until 1969, when the New York Mets defeated the Baltimore Orioles in five games.

The Yankees won the series in seven games, capturing their 17th championship. Brooklyn won Games 1 and 2, but New York pitchers threw five consecutive complete games (Games 3–7) to cap off the comeback. The highlight was Don Larsen's perfect game in Game 5. Larsen was named the Series MVP for his achievement. The Dodgers scored 19 runs in the first two games, but only six in the remaining five games, with just one in the final three games.

This was the last World Series to date not to have scheduled off days (although Game 2 was postponed a day due to rain).

As of March 2020, four original television broadcasts from this series (Game 2 partial, Games 3 and 5 complete, Game 7 partial) had been released on DVD.[1]

Summary

AL New York Yankees (4) vs. NL Brooklyn Dodgers (3)

Game Date Score Location Time Attendance 
1 October 3 New York Yankees – 3, Brooklyn Dodgers – 6 Ebbets Field 2:32 34,479[2] 
2 October 5 New York Yankees – 8, Brooklyn Dodgers – 13 Ebbets Field 3:26 36,217[3] 
3 October 6 Brooklyn Dodgers – 3, New York Yankees – 5 Yankee Stadium 2:17 73,977[4] 
4 October 7 Brooklyn Dodgers – 2, New York Yankees – 6 Yankee Stadium 2:43 69,705[5] 
5 October 8 Brooklyn Dodgers – 0, New York Yankees – 2 Yankee Stadium 2:06 64,519[6] 
6 October 9 New York Yankees – 0, Brooklyn Dodgers – 1 (10) Ebbets Field 2:37 33,224[7] 
7 October 10 New York Yankees – 9, Brooklyn Dodgers – 0 Ebbets Field 2:19 33,782[8]

: postponed from October 4 due to rain

Matchups

Game 1

Gil Hodges
October 3, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 2 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 9 1
Brooklyn 0 2 3 1 0 0 0 0 X 6 9 0
WP: Sal Maglie (1–0)   LP: Whitey Ford (0–1)
Home runs:
NYY: Mickey Mantle (1), Billy Martin (1)
BRO: Jackie Robinson (1), Gil Hodges (1)

Three batters into the game, the Yankees led 2–0 on a Mickey Mantle home run. Brooklyn struck back with a Jackie Robinson homer in the second inning and a three-run Gil Hodges shot in the third, then won behind Sal Maglie's complete game.

Game 2

Duke Snider
October 5, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 1 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 8 12 2
Brooklyn 0 6 1 2 2 0 0 2 X 13 12 0
WP: Don Bessent (1–0)   LP: Tom Morgan (0–1)
Home runs:
NYY: Yogi Berra (1)
BRO: Duke Snider (1)

Neither starting pitcher survived the second inning, Don Newcombe giving up a Yogi Berra grand slam, and Don Larsen giving up four unearned runs. Little-known pitcher Don Bessent worked the final seven innings for the win.

Game 2 set a number of peculiar records in World Series history, which are either matched or comparable with similar World Series records and performances, in limited instances:

Game 3

Enos Slaughter
October 6, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Brooklyn 0 1 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 3 8 1
New York 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 1 X 5 8 1
WP: Whitey Ford (1–1)   LP: Roger Craig (0–1)
Home runs:
BRO: None
NYY: Billy Martin (2), Enos Slaughter (1)

Whitey Ford pitched a complete game, scattering eight hits, and got the support he needed from an Enos Slaughter three-run homer in the sixth that gave the Yankees a 4–2 lead; they never trailed in the game afterwards.

Game 4

Hank Bauer
October 7, 1956 2:00 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Brooklyn 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 6 0
New York 1 0 0 2 0 1 2 0 X 6 7 2
WP: Tom Sturdivant (1–0)   LP: Carl Erskine (0–1)
Home runs:
BRO: None
NYY: Mickey Mantle (2), Hank Bauer (1)

Hank Bauer's two-run homer in the seventh off Don Drysdale, pitching in relief, put the game away for the Yankees, who got a complete-game six-hitter from Tom Sturdivant. Mantle hit a home run off Ed Roebuck in the previous inning.

Game 5

Don Larsen
October 8, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Yankee Stadium in Bronx, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Brooklyn 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
New York 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 X 2 5 0
WP: Don Larsen (1–0)   LP: Sal Maglie (1–1)
Home runs:
BRO: None
NYY: Mickey Mantle (3)

Main article: Don Larsen's perfect game

In Game 5, Don Larsen, displaying an unusual "no-windup" style and "working the curveball beautifully",[9] pitched the only postseason perfect game, and the only World Series no-hitter until 2022. While striking out seven Dodgers, Larsen had only one at-bat reach a three-ball count (against Pee Wee Reese, in the first inning).

Of several close moments, the best remembered is Gil Hodges' fifth-inning line drive toward Yankee Stadium's famed "Death Valley" in left-center, snared by center fielder Mickey Mantle with a spectacular running catch. In addition to that, Yankees fielders had to record three more lineouts, and shortstop Gil McDougald had to make a play on a ball that caromed off third baseman Andy Carey’s glove.

Brooklyn's Sal Maglie gave up only two runs on five hits and was perfect himself until a fourth-inning home run by Mantle broke the scoreless tie. The Yankees added an insurance run in the sixth as Hank Bauer's single scored Carey, who had opened the inning with a single and was sacrificed to second by Larsen.

The final out of the game came on a called third strike against Dale Mitchell and generated one of the most iconic images in sports history, when catcher Yogi Berra leaped into Larsen's arms.

When a reporter asked Yankees manager Casey Stengel afterward if this was the best game Larsen had ever pitched, Stengel diplomatically answered, "So far!" For Larsen, it was an especially satisfying performance, as he had acquired perhaps a better reputation as a night owl than as a pitcher. Stengel once said of Larsen, "The only thing he fears is sleep!" Larsen's perfect game was also the last game that umpire Babe Pinelli called behind the plate.[10]

Sports cartoonist Willard Mullin drew an illustration of a happy Larsen painting a canvas titled The Master Piece, observed by a group of fawning art critics and Mullin's classic "Brooklyn Bum". Referencing the old saw "I don't know much about art, but I know what I like", the disgusted-looking Bum came up with a variation: "It may be art...but I don't like it!"[11]

Brooklyn starter Sal Maglie appeared on the game show What's My Line? the night before the game, with former Yankee Phil Rizzuto as one of the panel members.[12][13]

Game 6

Jackie Robinson
October 9, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
New York 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 7 0
Brooklyn 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 4 0
WP: Clem Labine (1–0)   LP: Bob Turley (0–1)

In a 10-inning scoreless pitching duel with both starters going all the way, Jackie Robinson's walk-off single to left in the bottom of the 10th won the game for Clem Labine and kept the Dodgers' championship hopes alive. Tough-luck loser Bob Turley gave up a 10th-inning walk to Jim Gilliam, a sacrifice bunt by Pee Wee Reese and intentional pass to Duke Snider before the decisive hit. Game 6 is one of only three games in World Series history to be scoreless through nine innings, the others being Game 2 in 1913 and Game 7 in 1991.

Game 7

Yogi Berra
October 10, 1956 1:00 pm (ET) at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, New York
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
New York 2 0 2 1 0 0 4 0 0 9 10 0
Brooklyn 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1
WP: Johnny Kucks (1–0)   LP: Don Newcombe (0–1)
Home runs:
NYY: Yogi Berra 2 (3), Elston Howard (1), Bill Skowron (1)
BRO: None

Yogi Berra's two homers led New York to an unexpectedly easy 9–0 title-clinching victory. Yankee pitcher Johnny Kucks struck out Jackie Robinson to end the Series. It would be Robinson's final at-bat, as he retired at the season's end.

After belting the Yankee pitching staff for 19 runs and 21 hits in the first two games, the Dodger bats went silent in the next five games, scoring only six runs on 21 hits, batting only .142 (21–for–148). New York outscored Brooklyn 22–6 in Games 3–7, the Yankees winning their 17th World Series.

Composite line score

1956 World Series (4–3): New York Yankees (A.L.) over Brooklyn Dodgers (N.L.)

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 R H E
New York Yankees 6 6 2 6 0 5 6 1 1 0 33 58 6
Brooklyn Dodgers 0 9 4 4 2 1 1 2 1 1 25 42 2
Total attendance: 345,903   Average attendance: 49,415
Winning player's share: $8,715   Losing player's share: $6,934[14]

Broadcasting

NBC televised the Series, with announcers Mel Allen (for the Yankees) and Vin Scully (for the Dodgers). In 2006, it was announced that a nearly-complete kinescope recording of the Game 5 telecast (featuring Larsen's perfect game) had been discovered by a collector. That kinescope recording aired during the MLB Network's inaugural night on the air on January 1, 2009, supplemented with interviews of both Larsen and Yogi Berra by Bob Costas.[15] The first inning of the telecast is still considered lost and was not aired by the MLB Network or included in a subsequent DVD release of the game.

The Mutual network aired the Series on radio, with Bob Wolff and Bob Neal announcing. This was the final World Series broadcast for Mutual, which had covered the event since 1935; NBC's radio network would gain exclusive national rights to baseball the following season.

Notes

  1. ^ "Rare Sports Films - Vintage Baseball Video Sports Auto Racing Events". www.raresportsfilms.com. Archived from the original on November 3, 2020. Retrieved May 22, 2022.
  2. ^ "1956 World Series Game 1 – New York Yankees vs. Brooklyn Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  3. ^ "1956 World Series Game 2 – New York Yankees vs. Brooklyn Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  4. ^ "1956 World Series Game 3 – Brooklyn Dodgers vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. ^ "1956 World Series Game 4 – Brooklyn Dodgers vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. ^ "1956 World Series Game 5 – Brooklyn Dodgers vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  7. ^ "1956 World Series Game 6 – New York Yankees vs. Brooklyn Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  8. ^ "1956 World Series Game 7 – New York Yankees vs. Brooklyn Dodgers". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  9. ^ Comment made by Bob Neal during the game broadcast on the Mutual Broadcasting System
  10. ^ Nemec, David; Flatow, Scott (April 2008). Great Baseball Feats, Facts and Figures (2008 ed.). New York: Penguin Group. p. 42. ISBN 978-0-451-22363-0.
  11. ^ Lukas, Paul (September 10, 2013). "Uni Watch Book Club: 'Willard Mullin's Golden Age of Baseball'". Uni Watch. Retrieved August 9, 2022.
  12. ^ "Sal Maglie; Ann Miller; Phil Rizutto [panel]". What's My Line?. Episode 331. October 7, 1956. Archived from the original on December 12, 2021. Retrieved June 29, 2017.
  13. ^ "What's My Line? (1950-67 Daly)". Kent's Game Show Trading Page. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011. Retrieved June 29, 2017.
  14. ^ "World Series Gate Receipts and Player Shares". Baseball Almanac. Archived from the original on May 2, 2009. Retrieved June 14, 2009.
  15. ^ Sandomir, Richard (January 1, 2009). "Fans who can't get enough get more". The New York Times.

See also

References