Continuing our countdown of the 20 greatest Dodgers of all time, as selected by our readers.
No. 6: Roy Campanella (10 first-place votes, 44,667 points)
One of the greatest catchers of all time, Roy Campanella began his Dodgers career in 1948 and played with the team until his career was cut short after the 1957 season.
Campanella received the NL MVP award in 1951, 1953 and 1955. In 1955, he led the Dodgers to their first World Series title. His 142 RBIs in 1953 broke the franchise record of 130, which had been held by Jack Fournier (1925) and Babe Herman (1930) and is still second of all time to Tommy Davis' 153 in 1962.
The Dodgers moved from Brooklyn to Los Angeles after the 1957 season, and Campanella was all set to be the team's starting catcher in Los Angeles. On Jan. 28, 1958, while driving in New York, Campanella's car hit a patch of ice, ran into a telephone pole and overturned. Campanella broke his neck in the accident and was paralyzed. He eventually regained use of his arms, but Campanella remained in a wheelchair for the rest of his life before passing away on June 26, 1993.
On May 7, 1959, the Dodgers honored their long-time catcher with Roy Campanella Night at the L.A. Coliseum. The Dodgers played the New York Yankees in an exhibition game before a crowd of 93,103, the largest crowd to attend a Major League Baseball game.