The 1951 World Series matched the two-time defending champion New York Yankees against the New York Giants, who had won the National League pennant in a thrilling three-game playoff with the Brooklyn Dodgers on the legendary home run by Bobby Thomson (the Shot Heard 'Round the World).
In the Series, the Yankees showed some power of their own, including Gil McDougald's grand slam home run in Game 5, at the Polo Grounds. The Yankees won the Series in six games, for their third straight title and fourteenth overall. This would be the last World Series for Joe DiMaggio, who retired afterward, and the first for rookies Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle.
This World Series also matched up two of baseball's most colorful managers, Casey Stengel of the Yankees and Leo Durocher of the Giants.
This was the thirteenth appearance by the Giants in Series play, their ninth loss, and their first appearance since the 1937 World Series.
"The Commerce Comet arrives on the final voyage of the Yankee Clipper." The 1951 World Series was the first for Mickey Mantle and the final for Joe DiMaggio.
Mantle's bad luck with injuries in the major leagues began here. In the fifth inning of Game 2 at Yankee Stadium, Mays flied to deep right center. DiMaggio and Mantle converged on the ball, DiMaggio called Mantle off, and Mantle stutter-stepped, catching a cleat in a drain cover, and fell to the ground in a heap with a wrenched knee as DiMaggio made the catch. Mantle was done for this Series, but would come back to play many more.
New York City became the first city to host an NBA Finals and a World Series in the same calendar year.