On April 15th each year besides being Income Tax Day it’s also Jackie Robinson Day in Major League Baseball. It was a little strange that day seeing everyone in the same number “42″ but as the game went on I was learning a few things and have had to go do a little reading of my own to truly understand the change this man-made to the world of baseball.
Jackie was born Jack Roosevelt Robinson on October 31, 1919 and left us on October 24, 1972. Jackie broke the baseball color line when the Brooklyn Dodgers played him at first base on April 15, 1947, that move ended the black players being regulated to the “Negro Leagues” for six decades.
Jackie Robinson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. it wasn’t until 1997, retired his uniform number, 42, across all major league teams. That was the first time a pro athlete in any sport to be so honored. Any player who was still wearing 42 was allowed to keep the number. Current player Mariano Rivera is the only active player left still allowed to continue to wear the number. Initiated for the first time on April 15, 2004, Major League Baseball has adopted a new annual tradition, “Jackie Robinson Day“, on which every player on every team wears #42.
Mr. Robinson was a Second Lieutenant in the Army and was given an honorable discharge for refusing to move to the back of a bus, and that happened eleven year before Rosa Parks.
In junior high school Jackie played on the same team with Future Baseball Hall of Famers, Ted Williams and Bob Lemon. Jackie was elected to the Hall of Fame on the first ballot receiving 77.5% of the voting
This was an amazing man with a wonderful career. He was only 53 when he passed away. He would have been full of knowledge and the stories I get he could tell about many amazing events.
There is plenty to read out there about his life and what happened, I have only touched the surface here. I encourage you to get out there and do some reading of your own. See what little nugget you can discover about a truly amazing man named……
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