The history of the Dodgers virtually mirrors the history of baseball itself.
Playing in Brooklyn, they occupied an essential place in the game's New York heyday from 1947-56. They launched the integration of the Majors by signing Jackie Robinson. They took part in baseball's westward expansion. They steadily built a legacy of success in Los Angeles.
A collection of Dodger artifacts, therefore, is bound to be worth seeing. Particularly if the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is involved with it.
The Hall of Fame's collection of more than 40,000 three-dimensional pieces contains artifacts that tell the story of the game's legendary players, moments and triumphs. Beginning this summer and running through 2020, the Museum will share some of those memorable artifacts through a new limited time experience: Starting Nine, which features nine artifacts from each of the 30 current MLB franchises. Whether you've visited before or you've always wanted to check it off your family's bucket list, this is another great reason to plan a visit to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum -- the spiritual home of America's Pastime – in beautiful Cooperstown, N.Y.
1. Emergence of power
Fun facts: Cody Bellinger wore this jersey on Aug. 5, 2017, when he belted his 31st homer of the season. Bellinger proceeded to finish with 39 homers and the National League Rookie of the Year Award. Bellinger outdid himself last season, amassing 47 homers and 115 RBIs to secure the NL Most Valuable Player Award.
2. Can-do Campy
Fun facts: This is the bat Roy Campanella used in 1953, when he captured his second of three NL MVP Awards. Campanella was an offensive force, batting .312 with career highs in home runs (41) and RBIs (142).
3. Zero after zero
Fun facts: An entire bag of baseballs might have been necessary to keep up with the pace Don Drysdale maintained in 1968. These three baseballs commemorate his record sixth consecutive shutout, a 5-0 decision over Pittsburgh on June 4; his new record of 56 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings, established on June 8 against Philadelphia, passing Walter Johnson; and the total of 58 2/3 straight innings when the streak ended.
4. Nice week in a day
Fun facts: Hitting a record-tying four home runs in one game on May 23, 2002, wasn't enough for right fielder Shawn Green. He also singled and doubled to set a new big league single-game mark of 19 total bases. Green used this bat to clobber three more homers in two games until the bat broke. Green still set another record with seven homers in three games.
5. Feats of Clayton
Fun facts: Clayton Kershaw wore these shoes during the 2013 season, when he garnered his second NL Cy Young Award. Kershaw earned the honor by leading the league with 232 strikeouts and pacing the Majors with a 1.83 ERA.
6. Sandy is dandy
Fun facts: This was the Major League Cy Young Award that Sandy Koufax won in 1965 after another phenomenal season. He led the Majors in wins (26), complete games (27), ERA (2.04), strikeouts (382, a modern-era record until Nolan Ryan broke it with 383 in 1973) and WHIP (0.855). Oh, and on Sept. 9, 1965, he pitched a perfect game against the Cubs.
7. A man for all seasons
Fun facts: This is the cap that Jackie Robinson wore in 1955. That's when the Dodgers finally pierced the Yankees' October dominance and defeated them in the World Series after enduring crushing defeats in 1947, '49, '52 and '53. Robinson, who spent his entire 10-year career with Brooklyn, appeared in all seven games of that '55 Fall Classic.
8. Dodgers ace Orel exam
Fun facts: This is the baseball that cemented the Dodgers' sixth World Series title. Orel Hershiser threw it past Oakland's Tony Phillips for a swinging strikeout that sealed Los Angeles' 5-2 triumph in its Game 5 clincher. Hershiser, who blanked Oakland in Game 2, was named the World Series MVP.
9. Christening a cathedral
Fun facts: This souvenir pennant celebrates the opening of Dodger Stadium, which quickly became known as one of the finest ballparks ever constructed. On April 9, 1962, representatives of the Dodgers and the American League's Los Angeles Angels, who also called Dodger Stadium home until 1966, enjoyed lunch in the edifice's parking lot as part of the dedication ceremonies.