On November 24, 1953, Dodger owner Walter O’Malley announced that Walter Alston would be the new manager of the Brooklyn team, replacing Chuck Dressen. The announcement came as a shock to reporters, as the leading candidate for the job had been the fan-favorite Pee Wee Reese. Alston would go on to win seven pennants and four World Series during his 23 years with the team.
The 1952 World Series featured a matchup between the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Yankees. Brooklyn’s right-handed pitcher Billy Loes had concluded the season with a 13-8 record that included four shutouts and a 2.69 ERA. Prior to the start of the World Series, Loes was asked in an interview how the Dodgers would fare.
After the interview, Dodgers’ manager Charlie Dressen cornered Loes, demanding to know why he predicted that the Yankees would win the Series in seven games. Loes protested, “I was misquoted.” He then clarified, “I picked them in six games.”
Loes’s mishaps continued into the Series itself. During the seventh inning of Game 6, Loes became the first pitcher in World Series history to commit a balk when the ball slipped from his hand while going into his windup. He later explained, “Too much spit on it.” Then, with two outs in the inning, Yankees pitcher Vic Raschi hit a grounder that bounced off Loes’s leg and into the outfield for a single, allowing a run to score. Afterward, Loes said he lost the ground ball in the sun. The Yankees won that game, 3-2.
The pre-Series quote printed by the papers ended up being more accurate than Loes’s actual prediction, as the Yankees won the Series in seven games.