On this date 64 years ago, Jackie Robinson made history when he took the field as a Brooklyn Dodger. Tonight, all of baseball celebrates Robinson's legacy, as all uniformed personnel for every team will wear number 42, as has been the practice for the last several seasons. There will be pregame ceremonies at all 15 major league stadiums in use today.â†µ
In addition, MLB has launched a new website, iam42.com, which will aim to become "a new digital campaign designed for fans to make a personal connection to the legacy of Baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson through online video sharing and social networking via Twitter and Facebook." There are several videos featuring current players, and Hall of Famers like Ernie Banks and Andre Dawson, revealing what Jackie Robinson means to them.â†µ
"Jack loved the game of baseball and the tremendous power it had and still has to bring people together," said Rachel Robinson, Jackie’s wife and Founder of the Jackie Robinson Foundation. "I believe he would have found Major League Baseball’s decision to perpetually honor his legacy in this way both gratifying and humbling."â†µ
In New York, the Robinson family will take part in a pregame ceremony at Yankee Stadium, during which the Tuskegee Airmen will be on field. At Dodger Stadium, their Veteran of the Game will be Tuskegee Airman Theodore J. Lumpkin. In addition, Robinson's teammate Don Newcombe will throw out the ceremonial first pitch.