This Day In Dodgers History: Roy Campanella Wins 1951 NL MVP Award; Jim Tracy & Joe Torre Hired

On November 1, 1951, Roy Campanella won the first of three career National League MVP Awards after putting together and impressive season with the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Campanella, who was in his fourth season with the Dodgers, went on to win NL MVP in 1953 and 1955 as well. That stretch coincided with eight consecutive All-Star Game appearances.

In 1951, Campanella hit .325/.393/.590, and a career-high 33 doubles to go along with 33 home runs and 108 RBI over 143 games. The only other season in which Campanella hit more home runs came in 1953, when he slugged 41.

Campanella’s career came to a tragic end when he was paralyzed in an accident in January 1958. That prevented him from playing for the franchise after their move to Los Angeles.

Over 10 seasons with the Dodgers, Campanella hit .276/.360/.500 with 178 doubles, 242 home runs and 856 RBI in 1,215 career games. He helped guide the team to five NL pennants and one World Series.

Campanella passed away at the age of 71 in June 1993. The Dodgers honor his name by annually presenting the Roy Campanella Award to a player in the organization “who best exemplifies the spirit and leadership of the late Hall of Fame catcher.”

Jim Tracy named manager

Also on Nov. 1, the Los Angeles Dodgers hired Jim Tracy as manager to succeed Davey Johnson. He had already been part of the organization as bench coach.

Tracy’s managerial tenure began with the 2001 season, and he went 427-383 over five seasons at the helm of the Dodgers. That included an NL West title in 2004 but no other postseason appearances.

2007: Dodgers hire Joe Torre

Nov. 1, 2007 saw the Dodgers make another hire as they named Joe Torre their 26th manager in franchise history.

Torre finished 259-227 during his three seasons as Dodgers manager from 2008-2010. They twice won an NL Division Series under Torre but lost to the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL Championship Series in 2008 and 2009.

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