On April 15, Major League ballparks around the country, especially Dodger Stadium, pay tribute to the man that broke to color barrier in baseball, Jackie Robinson. Remembered not only for his race, but for his skill and tenacity as a ballplayer, and the grace with which he conducted himself on and off the field, Robinson not only helped to pave the way for an integrated sport, but an integrated country as well. Today, we celebrate his life, and in baseball games around the country, all players will wear his number, 42, in honor of his great achievements.
On April 15, 1947, Robinson took the field in a Brooklyn Dodgers uniform, becoming the first African-American to play Major League Baseball. Over the next 10 seasons, he played in six World Series and six consecutive All-Star games, as well as winning the first Rookie of the Year award in 1947 (now called the Jackie Robinson Award), and the MVP two years later. First, let’s take a look at his astounding career.
And now, because this is Retroland, after all, here is a clip of Jackie appearing on What’s My Line:
Robinson, who played his last game in 1956, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. In 1997, number 42, which he wore his entire career, was retired on every MLB team (with the exception of today). Jackie passed away in 1972, at the age of 53, but memories of the man will live on forever. If Jackie meant something to you, either on the field or off, share your memories with all of us at Retroland, as we tip our collective caps to this great American.