(East Los Angeles, CA) April 12, 2022 [From The Editor’s Desk]: April 15th has become a most celebratory date in Major League Baseball, the exact and precise day in which Jackie Robinson took his place in the Dodgers line-up, and not only in MLB’s history book, but also in our country’s gigantic and historic step forward. It was the day that is permanently etched in our collective minds. That moment was witnessed by thousands of Dodgers fans in attendance and millions more who listened to it on radio, as #42 broke the highly controversial “color barrier” while making his first start for the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947.
Since 2004, MLB has continued to promote the importance and the significance of this hallowed relationship that initiated a better understanding of racial equality and justice in our country as evidenced through the world of sport. Now, with each and every new year of this celebration, the Dodgers, through their annual homage and tribute to Jackie Robinson, lead the MLB in proclaiming even greater situational awareness to its commitment to fairness, inclusiveness, and equality, as this American sport continues to unify us as baseball-loving fans and citizens.
Now, let’s all see what the Dodgers will be offering its fan-base, MLB, the Cities of Pasadena, Compton, and our great City of the Angels, as we approach this year’s Dodgers Celebration of “Jackie Robinson Day” on Good Friday, April 15th.
DODGERS TO CELEBRATE JACKIE ROBINSON DAY AT DODGER STADIUM AND THROUGHOUT LOS ANGELES
LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers will join Major League Baseball, and the entire country, in celebrating the 75th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking baseball’s color barrier on Friday, April 15. Making it extra special this year, members of the Robinson family will be joining the celebration including Jackie’s wife, Rachel Robinson, and his son, David. Together, the club will celebrate Jackie’s legacy not only at Dodger Stadium, but throughout the day with unique events at places that were incredibly meaningful to Jackie.
The Dodgers and Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) will begin the morning in Pasadena, where Jackie Robinson grew up. Dodger pitcher, David Price, will be joined by State Superintendent, Tony Thurmond, Players Alliance founders, Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson, and the Robinson family at Longfellow Elementary School to launch a Jackie Robinson Reading Series, part of LA Reads presented by the Water Buffalo Club. All 575 students will witness David Robinson read “I Am Jackie Robinson” by Brad Melter and will receive a copy of the book.
Just two miles away, All-Star outfielder Mookie Betts will join the Robinson family at Jackie’s alma mater, John Muir High School, for a special statue unveiling in honor of their famous alumnus. Robinson attended John Muir in the 1930s and excelled in football, basketball, track, and baseball. The permanent project will highlight Jackie throughout various stages of his life in Southern California and beyond, keeping the Hall of Famer front and center for future generations of students to be inspired. All youth participating in both events in Pasadena will receive a special edition Jackie Robinson baseball cap.
Prior to the gates opening on Friday evening, Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts, Dodger players and Jackie Robinson Foundation scholars will be joined by the Robinson family for an intimate discussion about Jackie and the Robinson family legacy at the Jackie Robinson statue in the Centerfield Plaza.
A reminder to all interested fans, you can purchase tickets to this special game, by visiting dodgers.com/tickets. A very special evening has been planned at Dodger Stadium when the team takes on the Cincinnati Reds at 7:10 p.m. Fans can expect the following:
- Unique Stadium Giveaway: The first 40,000 ticketed fans in attendance will receive a one-of-a-kind No. 42 Jackie Robinson Brooklyn Dodgers road grey jersey, presented by UCLA Health, and commemorating the 75th anniversary with a special patch. Robinson starred at UCLA from 1939-40 and became the first Bruin to earn a Varsity letter in four sports: track, basketball, baseball, and football.
- Pregame Ceremonies: The Dodgers will invite 75 special guests onto the field during pregame ceremonies. The guests will include 42 Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholars and Alumni and 33 students from John Muir High School. To date, the Dodgers and the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation have supported 70 JRF scholars and donated more than $3.5 million. Charles Jones will perform the National Anthem.
- FUNDRAISER 42: Beginning on April 15, LADF will launch Fundraiser 42, a three-month effort to raise money for Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarships. Fans can donate by texting JACKIE42 to 41623. The 50/50 Raffle proceeds will be dedicated to the Jackie Robinson Foundation. The 42 jerseys worn by the players will be auctioned in June to support the overall effort.
- Number ‘42’: Players, managers, coaches, umpires, and all on-field personnel will wear Robinson’s iconic number during the game, which also includes a ‘42’ logo patch on the Nike uniform sleeves and the New Era caps. MLB will donate all licensed royalties from the sales of caps to the Jackie Robinson Foundation. In addition, for the first time ever, all MLB uniforms will feature a Dodger Blue No. ’42,’ regardless of their team colors.
- Tip of the Cap: In association with the U.S. Conference of Mayors, hundreds of Mayors from across the United States and Puerto Rico will participate in a social media campaign to “Tip Their Caps” to Jackie Robinson.
Another event has recently been added for Saturday, 4/16, which will conclude the Dodgers’ 2022 tribute to Jackie Robinson, as the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation will host an event in Compton, CA starting at approximately 10:00 AM. The Dodgers Dreamfields Phase 2 will unveil Gonzales Park, home to Jackie Robinson Stadium, Rachel Robinson Field, Field 42 and the Kershaw’s Challenge Training and Fitness Zone, featuring solar arrays and EV car ports and field upgrades.
Scheduled to appear at this event are the following individuals: Nichol Whiteman – CEO, Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation, David Robinson – Son of Jackie and Rachel Robinson; Ayo Robinson, Granddaughter of Jackie and Rachel Robinson; Clayton Kershaw – Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher, Founder of Kershaw’s Challenge (Project Partner); Emma Sharif – Mayor, City of Compton; and Darin Brawley – Compton Unified Superintendent.
Following a brief program, Centennial High School and King Drew Magnet High School will then play a celebratory 75th anniversary baseball game at Jackie Robinson Stadium while 100 Dodgers Dream-team youth participate in a STEM Field Day, putting to practice LADF’s Science of Baseball curriculum and use applications of science and math to connect to baseball concepts through various stations. ###
Hoping that many of you who are parents of a Dodgers baseball family, and are our followers of East L.A. Sports Scene, will be able to come out and experience one of these well-planned events. I’m sure that you will be very glad that you did!