2012 45¢ Larry Doby
Issue Date: July 20, 2012
City: Cooperstown, NY
Printed By: Avery Dennison
Printing Method: Photogravure
Perforations: Die Cut 11
During the fourth game of the 1948 World Series, the Cleveland Indians and Boston Braves were locked in a pitchers’ duel. Boston star pitcher Johnny Sain was pitching to a Cleveland outfielder named Larry Doby, who drove the ball 420 feet for a home run. This would prove to be the game winner.
As the Indians celebrated in the clubhouse after the game, a photographer snapped a picture of Doby and winning pitcher Steve Gromek hugging cheek-to-cheek in sheer joy, with ear-to-ear grins. The picture appeared in major newspapers across the country. It caused a stir.
Doby, a black man, had not even been allowed to play in the Major Leagues two years earlier. Now, he and his white teammate were instant symbols of America’s changing views on race.
Doby (1923-2003) was just 24 years old at the time. He followed Jackie Robinson as the second black player in baseball (Doby was first in the American League). He would go on to play in seven All-Star games and was elected to the Hall of Fame.
Years later, Doby was hired as manager of the Chicago White Sox. One of his players had been born in Cleveland in 1950, and was named Larry Doby Johnson, after the man who was now his manager.