Six years ago the Dodgers left behind its "Dodgertown” complex in Vero Beach, Florida, in favor of a new spring training home in Arizona. 60 years before that -- and 10 before the Dodgers departed Brooklyn for Los Angeles -- Life's George Silk took the incredible images in the mini gallery above, some of which appeared in the magazine and others that Life did not publish until now.
While the team rostered such legends as Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, and Roy Campanella at the time, the photos capture mostly rookies and prospects who never smelled the grass of Ebbets Field. The story reads:
Some of [the prospects] will be playing for Brooklyn three years from now if by that time Rickey, a past master at turning baseball talent into gold, has not sold them to other major-league teams at a handsome profit. When Dodgertown breaks up, Rickey and his staff will know, or think they know, how far every player can go in the Brooklyn baseball chain and how fast he can get there. Almost all of them will get a chance to make the grade in 1948 with one of the 25 minor-league farm clubs operated by the Dodgers. But a disappointed few will be taken aside and quietly advised to forget the whole thing and get a job in a filling station.Watch: College Volleyball Player Gets Absolutely Annihilated by Spike to the Face