Everybody now knows that baseball is first a business and then a sport. But a half-century ago, the revelation came as a shock to a much maligned borough that had clutched the Dodgers to its collective breast. All too suddenly, the glory years were going, going, gone. But while they lasted, Brooklyn usually seemed like heaven to those who cherished “Dem Bums.” The Dodgers were family long before the idea occurred musically to Sister Sledge.
Here’s how Snider, the wonderful center fielder, recalled it: “You look around and you see Billy Cox and Pee Wee [Reese] and Jackie and [Carl] Furillo, Andy Pafko and Gil [Hodges] and Campy [Roy Campanella], all those guys taking the field with you. And that was the greatest feeling in the world ‘cause we knew we were supposed to win and most of the time we were going to win.”
So they did, and now HBO has paid a winning and fitting tribute to the Boys of Summer.
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