Ralph Branca, pitcher who gave up ‘Shot Heard ‘Round World,’ dies

RYE, N.Y. — Ralph Branca, the Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher who gave up the home run dubbed the “Shot Heard ‘Round the World,” has died at the age of 90.

Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca in 1953, two years after he gave up the "shot heard 'round the world." That homerun became one of the most famous in baseball history. (Public Domain)

Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca in 1953, two years after he gave up the “shot heard ’round the world.” That homerun became one of the most famous in baseball history. (Public Domain)

His son-in-law Bobby Valentine, a former major league manager, says Branca died Wednesday at a nursing home in Rye, New York.

The home run that Branca gave up on Oct. 3, 1951, became one of the most famous in baseball history.

Bobby Thomson hit a three-run homer off Branca with one out in the bottom of the ninth to give the New York Giants a dramatic 5-4 playoff victory and the National League pennant. Thomson’s heroics put the Giants into the World Series.

Branca, a three-time All-Star, spent the first 11 seasons of his big-league career with the Dodgers. He also pitched for the Tigers and Yankees.