Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The legendary Los Angeles Dodgers infield of first baseman Steve Garvey, second baseman Davey Lopes, third baseman Ron Cey and shortstop Bill Russell is going to be celebrated at Dodger Stadium for their 50th anniversary on Friday, June 23.
The quartet will be recognized during a pregame ceremony before the Dodgers play the Houston Astros. Festivities are to include a tribute video, and Garvey, Russell and Cey throwing out the ceremonial first pitches.
Lopes is unable to attend the event.
The Dodgers previously honored their ‘Longest Running Infield’ in bobblehead form during the 2012 season and invited them to participate in the Old-Timers Game at Dodger Stadium in 2015.
The legendary Dodgers infield played their first game together on June 23, 1973, in the second contest of a twilight doubleheader at Dodger Stadium against the Cincinnati Reds.
What was otherwise a nondescript home game marked the start of an MLB record for longest infield group. Garvey, Lopes, Cey and Russell went on to play together for eight and a half seasons, culminating with winning the 1981 World Series.
From 1974 to 1981, the Garvey-Lopes-Russell-Cey infield made a combined 21 All-Star Game appearances and were part of Dodgers teams that won four National League West titles, four NL pennants (1974, 1977, 1978, 1981) and the aforementioned World Series title.
The Dodgers’ legendary infield was broken up when Lopes got traded to the Oakland Athletics for Lance Hudson on February 8, 1982.
How Dodgers infield came together
Equally as improbable as the legendary infield’s historic time together was how it came to be. Garvey spent two years playing third base but struggled to make throws. He was tried in left field and right field before catching on at first base, which created an opportunity for Cey at third.
Russell and Lopes changed positions during their professional careers to shortstop and second base, respectively.
Russell was first to join the Dodgers organization, as he was selected in the ninth round of the 1966 Draft. Garvey, Lopes and Cey were each picked in the 1968 Draft after initially being taken by other teams but declining to begin their respective careers at those times.
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