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Branca’s career might have been fairly forgettable if not for ‘’the Shot,’’ which is considered by many the greatest moment in baseball history.

Unfortunately, Branca was on the short end of it, but the grace with which he dealt with it earned him respect around the world.

It was his only All-Star appearance though he was named three straight years.* Taking on more of a swing role in 1950 for the Dodgers, Branca started 15 games (completing five), closed out 16 other games, and had seven saves.* Branca’s two career home runs came during a six-week span in 1950, both against the Pirates at Forbes Field.

Bobby Valentine talks with customers Tom and Nina Zvon, of Ridgefield, at Bobby Valentine’s Sports Gallery Cafe in downtown Stamford on Monday.

Branca, who sat disconsolate at his locker for many minutes after the homer, has had an incredible life.

During that memorable 1947 season he was the only player who was willing to line up next to Jackie Robinson.

‘’When I was down in Fort Myers, I heard [Lou] Piniella say on TV that it was unusual that the infield would be in in the second inning. It didn’t work, but he wants to get it into the minds of the players that he’s going to try a lot of small-ball type of things.

Well, it’s spring training and Bobby is getting them used to what they might need to do in the seventh inning. That’s what he does.’’Branca said he has had great debates with Valentine: For example, why does the first baseman line up in front of the runner rather than in back of the runner, or whether a changeup should be at least 10 miles per hour slower than a fastball. Branca grew up a huge Dodgers fan and remembers riding the subway and bus for 90 minutes just to get to Ebbets Field.

In his final spring training appearance he was relieved by Sandy Koufax, who fanned Thomson for his first major league strikeout.

Branca did a post-game show with Howard Cosell and he was also known for his 1963 run winning 17 consecutive games on the game show “Concentration.”Already, his presence around the Red Sox has been welcomed, especially by the veteran members of the organization.

less Diners watch one of many televisions while surrouded by sports and Bobby Valentine memorabilia during the last night of The Original Bobby V's Sports Bar in downtown Stamford, Conn. less Bobby Valentine takes a photo with longtime The Original Bobby V's Sports Bar customer Justin Justin Castelino in downtown Stamford, Conn. more New England Patriots fans from left: Ron Thomas, Jeff Negola and Connor Rasmussen greet one another before the start of the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. less New England Patriots fans from left: Ron Thomas, Jeff Negola and Connor Rasmussen greet one another before the start of the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks ... less Seattle Seahawks fan for the day John De Bruycker watches the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on ...

more Seattle Seahawks fan for the day John De Bruycker watches the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. more Oakland Raiders fan Keith Birch watches the broadcast of the Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. less Oakland Raiders fan Keith Birch watches the broadcast of the Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. more New England Patriots fan Jeff Negola watches the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. less New England Patriots fan Jeff Negola watches the broadcast of the Superbowl between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks at being shown at Bobby V's Sports Bar in Stamford, Conn., on Sunday, Feb. more STAMFORD — One of the city’s best-known sports bars has closed after more than three decades as a major player in the downtown dining scene.

Co-founder and owner Bobby Valentine announced the closing Saturday on his Facebook page.

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