Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Dodger Stadium Celebrates 50th Anniversary Season In 2012

From the Dodgers -

Los Angeles Dodgers’ Hall of Famer and Special Advisor to the Chairman Tommy Lasorda said it best when he described Dodger Stadium as “Blue Heaven on Earth.”

Dodger Stadium, overlooking downtown Los Angeles, is as beautiful as ever 50 years after its debut.  To mark that occasion, the Dodgers during the 2012 season will celebrate the great moments and individuals that have played major roles in the success of one of the most storied franchises in sports history.

The Dodger Stadium 50th Anniversary presented by State Farm logo features a panoramic view of the stadium's famed multi-colored seating decks. Traditional Dodger Blue is complemented by the building's mid-century modern color palette, while the gold banner and lettering signify the stadium’s Golden Anniversary. The points on the sunburst each represent a Major League Baseball ballpark opened and closed for baseball use during the 50-year life span of Dodger Stadium.  The logo will appear as badges on the Dodger uniforms during the 2012 season.

The Dodgers will commemorate this milestone extensively throughout the 2012 season with interactive elements including a newly-designed website, fan vote for the greatest moments in Dodger Stadium history, Dodger Stadium’s 50th Anniversary FanFest presented by State Farm, the remarkable Dodger Stadium Greats Bobblehead Series and limited edition commemorative merchandise.

Dodger fans can vote for their favorite moments in Dodger Stadium history by visiting  Results will be revealed starting in June with the top moment announced on October 3.

Four world championships, nine National League pennants and countless excitement and thrills directed for a majority of the 50 years by two Hall of Fame skippers—Walter Alston and Tommy Lasorda—and every season described by two legendary Hall of Fame announcers, Vin Scully and Jaime Jarrin.

It seems like only yesterday, when Dodger Stadium was built and opened to a capacity crowd on April 10, 1962, as the Dodgers took on the Cincinnati Reds.  Since then, some 143,826,220 fans have passed through the turnstiles during the regular season and another 3,020,043 attended post-season games.  The Dodgers have surpassed the three million mark in attendance 25 times with the highest mark coming in 2007 at 3,857,036.

Dodger fans across the country and throughout the world have their cherished memories of the past 50 years.  The 50th Anniversary of Dodger Stadium presented by State Farm will recognize numerous great moments and stars throughout the 2012 season, including:

·         Kirk Gibson’s walk-off pinch-hit home run in game 1 of the 1988 World Series enroute to the Dodgers’ World Championship.

·         The Dodgers sweep of the New York Yankees in the 1963 World Series

·         Pitching greats Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale.  Koufax with his perfect game against the Cubs on Sept. 9, 1965 and Drysdale setting the MLB record with a streak of 58.2 scoreless innings in 1968.

·         Maury Wills stealing a Major League record 104 bases in 1962.

·         Willie and Tommy Davis.  Tommy winning a second consecutive N.L. batting title in 1963 and Willie setting a then Dodger record in hitting in 31 consecutive games in 1969.

·         Rick Monday.  As an outfielder for the Chicago Cubs in 1976, Monday saved the American flag from burning and as an outfielder for the Dodgers, hitting a home run in the 1981 League Championship Series in Montreal to send the Dodgers to the World Series and an eventual championship over the New York Yankees.

·         Tommy Lasorda assuming the managerial reins in 1976 following the 23-year tenure of Hall of Famer Walter Alston and going on to blaze his own Hall of Fame trail.

·         Oldtimers Days remembering Dodger greats and the uniform ceremony in 1972 when the numbers of Sandy Koufax (32), Roy Campanella (39) and Jackie Robinson (42) were retired.

·         “Fernandomania” hits L.A. as rookie Fernando Valenzuela wins his first eight starts in 1981.

·         Dodger foursomes—the infield of Steve Garvey, Davey Lopes, Bill Russell and Ron Cey are the longest foursome to play together in MLB history at more than eight years.  And the quartet of Garvey, Cey, Reggie Smith and Dusty Baker becomes the first foursome to hit 30 or more home runs in 1977.  Baker makes it a foursome on the last day of the season.

·         Orel Hershiser breaks Don Drysdale’s record for consecutive scoreless innings at 59 in 1988.

The aforementioned is just a small sampling of the great moments and individuals to be recognized for their contributions to the first 50 years of Dodger Stadium.

There were other iconic moments that involved baseball, music, basketball, boxing and The Pope.

The 1980 All-Star game was played at Dodger Stadium and the stadium played host to the Olympic Baseball tournament in 1984.

Dodger Stadium has played host to many of the greatest stars of music beginning with the legendary Beatles in 1966, The Three Tenors in 1994, Elton John in 1975, the late Michael Jackson in 1984 and many more.  In addition to musical stars, The Pope celebrated mass at Dodger Stadium in 1987.  The venue also welcomed the Harlem Globetrotters for an exhibition basketball game in 1964 and it was also the site of a championship boxing match in 1963.

Another chapter in the rich history of Dodgers great moments and the list of memories will be added in 2012.

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