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Major League Baseball celebrates Jackie Robinson's breaking of color barrier

20 April, 2017, 13:31 | Author: Alberta Rodriguez
  • Top Sports

I suspect my dad, as I had with my daughter, tried to explain to me the significance of Robinson - how he had not only broken baseball's color barrier, but in his brief remarks that day, he implored Major League Baseball to do more by hiring its first black manager.

On April 15, 1947, Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball when he started at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Jackie Robinson's legacy will be commemorated in a special way for this year's annual Jackie Robinson Day. Jackie Robinson, as well as Lary Doby, who debuted with the Cleveland Indians in the American League in July of 1947, gave hope not only kids who now believed they had a chance to make it to the big leagues.

Before the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles, Jackie Robinson played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. While baseball has been celebrating it for many years, it wasn't until a little more than a decade ago MLB made 42's day official.

When Jackie Robinson won the National League MVP award in 1949, no one credible disputed the fairness of the honor.

Then I think of Jackie Robinson doing all of that with his own team rooting against him, on top of most of the baseball fans in the stands. The team will unveil his likeness during Jackie Robinson Day festivi.

I do remember, though, when Robinson, only a few weeks after that appearance, succumbed to complications from heart disease and diabetes at age 53.

That style never left Robinson for a day in his career and, more importantly, it was also the way he lived his life. Robinson, 37, holds a banner for the rival New York Giants baseball club to which he was traded for relief pitcher Dick Littlefield and $35,000 in cash. Beyond being an extraordinary athlete, Robinson was an extraordinary individual. To me, there is no greater way to do so than to be the country that he believed that we could.

But history is rarely so kind, and Robinson's perseverance guided him through those troubling times, and now we are fortunate enough to tell his story today to always serve as a reminder.

"You know that Jackie is just smiling in heaven right now", Johnson said. Most importantly though, I get to hit the field with an amazingly talented and diverse group of individuals, to play a game I love in front of an equally diverse crowd of fans, and all because Jackie Robinson had the courage to go first.

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