PHOENIX -- As all of Major League Baseball celebrated Jackie Robinson Day on Sunday, the 65th anniversary of Robinson breaking the game's color barrier, Diamondbacks right fielder Justin Upton reflected on his small place in Robinson's legacy.
In 2004, Upton won the inaugural Jackie Robinson Award as the national high school player of the year, as decided by Perfect Game and Baseball America. The award annually recognizes a high school senior for outstanding character, leadership and dedication to academics and community.
Upton, an African-American himself who played shortstop at Great Bridge High School in Chesapeake, Va., traveled to Baltimore to accept the award from Robinson's widow, Rachel Robinson, and iconic Orioles shortstop Cal Ripken, Jr. It was an experience that's meant more and more to Upton every year since, particularly on April 15.
"Just seeing the meaning of (Jackie Robinson Day) every year in the big leagues, it's an unbelievable feeli...