Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Famous Larry Doby Steve Gromek Embrace

Caption reads:
Celebrating in triumph, Steve Gromek and Larry Doby embrace and laugh after the fourth game of the 1948 World Series in Cleveland. Doby hit the home run which decided the outcome, 2-1, making Gromek the winninig pitcher. The picture, one of the first to show affection between black and white athletes in the era of integration, became one of Doby's most cherished mementos. (Photo courtesy of Wide World)

From "Baseball's Great Experiment: Jackie Robinson and His Legacy" by Jules Tygiel, p 239:

...The following day, the Indians won the sixth and concluding game of the Fall Classic, with Doby contributing two singles in four at-bats. The young outfielder paced the World Champion Indians in batting with a .318 average and emerged as one of the standout performers of the series.

A widely distributed photograph encapsulated the significance of Doby's World Series heroics. The picture showed Doby and winning pitcher Steve Gromek grinning and hugging each other in the aftermath of the fourth game. "That picture of Gromek and Doby has unmistakable flesh and blood cheeks pressed close together, brawny arms tightly clasped, equally wide grins," wrote columnist Marjorie Mackenzie in the Pittsburgh Courier. "The chief message of the Doby-Gromek picture is acceptance." This image, asserted Mackenzie "is capable of washing away with equal skill, long pent-up hatred in the hearts of men and the beginning of confusion in the minds of small boys."

1 comment:

Orie Barnes said...

I love this photo and am currently trying to purchase it through some online poster companies. If you know how to obtain such a print, please let me know. A slight correction to your caption is needed. The Indians did not win the World Series the following day as you state, rather they lost Game 5 in Cleveland the next day, then traveled to Boston for Game 6 the followoing day and won that game to win the Series.