Earlier this summer I went to a meeting of the New York Giants Nostalgia Society up in the Bronx. Here is a piece I did for SNY on the meeting:
"For some reason the Giants didn't get a love lock on the people of New York the way the Dodgers did on the people of Brooklyn," says Roger Kahn, whose seminal book, "The Boys of Summer", helped perpetuate the myth of the Brooklyn Dodgers. "The Giants were New York's original team. The old New Yorkers rooted for the Giants. The Yankees were tourists."
The Giants were New York's first baseball dynasty under the helm of John McGraw and led by superstar pitcher Christy Mathewson. But they were soon eclipsed by Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and the Yankees. "You never could refer to the Giants as Dem Bums or as Fat Cats," says Arnold Hano, author of the "A Day in the Bleachers," the classic first-person account of Game One of the 1954 World Series in which Willie Mays made his famous over-the-shoulder catch.
"The Yankees were Fat Cats, the Dodgers were Bums, and the Giants were in somewhere in between. They were like the middle child. They didn't have any gloried stars: Mel Ott and Bill Terry and Carl Hubbell were great but it was hard to have fan clubs for them. They were bland. Priests in Brooklyn were praying for Gil Hodges to break out of slump. Why didn't that happen to the Giants? Maybe because Brooklyn is the land of churches."
In addition, I shot and produced a short video for SNY. Here it is. Hope you enjoy (and thanks go to Dave, Jonah, Fred and Jay for helping me put it all together):