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A Moment in Time by Ralph Branca

Ralph Branca is not a household name. He is not in the baseball hall of fame, but he was part of one of sport’s most historic moments. Branca pitched the “The Shot Heard ‘Round the World,” the game winning home run by Bobby Thomson that gave the hated New York Giants the National League pennant capping the most unbelievable comeback in baseball history.

Branca recounts his rise to the major leagues and his relationships with legends Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Don Newcombe, Roy Campanella, Leo Durocher, Branch Rickey, Walter O’Malley, and many others. His career reached its pinnacle in 1951. The Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants came together for a three game playoff. The Giants won on a 0-1 fastball blasted by Bobby Thomson. Crushed but not destroyed, Branca fought on. Unfortunately, injuries plagued Branca for the rest of his career and he never returned to his former Brooklyn glory.

Years later, Branca discovered that with the use of telescopes, buzzers, and hand signals the 1951 Giants stole signs thus stealing Branca’s career. Nevertheless, as a man of character and honor Branca held his head high and did not succumb to becoming a crybaby or a sore loser. 

A very interesting story about a man even this Dodger fan did not know much about. Branca is a simple man. He loves baseball and his family. He always stood by his teammates even when no one else would. He was a player’s player, a gentleman playing during the golden age of baseball. 

Anyone who is a Dodger fan or just a sports fan in general would enjoy Ralph Branca’s story and his moment in time.