On April 12, 1960, the Los Angeles Dodgers held their home opener against the Chicago Cubs, winning 3-2 in 11 innings. A large crowd was on hand to see the victory, as the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum held 67,550 fans, breaking the Major League record for highest attendance at a night game.
The Cubs jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the third inning on Dodgers starter Don Drysdale, but Wally Moon’s two-run double tied it in the fifth inning. Moon, who is now 87-years-old, threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Dodger Stadium on Opening Day in 2017.
The April 1960 game went into extra innings, and the Dodgers won it in the 11th on a pinch-hit walk-off home run by Chuck Essegian.
In stark contrast to what’s seen as the game has evolved, Drysdale pitched all 11 innings. He allowed two runs on seven hits, while walking four and striking out 14. Cubs starter Bob Anderson went eight innings.
Managed by Walter Alston, the Dodgers finished 82-72 that season, only good for fourth place in the National League. Los Angeles failed to reach the postseason.
The Dodgers called the Coliseum home from 1958-61, after making the move out West from Brooklyn. Dodger Stadium was scheduled to open for the 1961 season, but lawsuits and construction issues caused delays.
The Coliseum has not been home to a professional baseball team since that point, but in 2008 the team returned to play an exhibition game against the Boston Red Sox.
It was in celebration of the 50-year anniversary of when Dodgers first played at the Coliseum. That evening (March 29, 2008) the Dodgers defeated the Red Sox, 7-4, in front of a record-setting crowd of 115,300.