Talk about keeping your eye on the prize! Called up from a 10 season career in Seattle’s farm system to replace the troubled Milton Bradley, outfielder Mike Wilson made an outstanding debut last week. He threw out the potential winning run at the plate in the bottom of the ninth against the Orioles – four innings later, he broke his bat for his first major league hit, a single that drove in the go-ahead run. The Mariners blew the lead but Wilson looks like he’s here to stay. Click here to read more from today’s NY Times.
via Mets Cetera
With his signing to the Brooklyn Dodger’s on April 18, 1946, Jackie Robinson cracked baseball’s color barrier. Making his first appearance with the Montreal Royals in the International League, he was called up to the parent club in the following year, where he helped the Dodgers win a National League pennant. Along the way he also earned National League Rookie Of The Year honors.
Robinson was quickly joined in Brooklyn by other Negro League stars, like Roy Campanella, Joe Black and Don Newcombe. By 1952, the “cream of the crop” of over 150 black players had been lured from Negro League rosters to the newly integrated minor and major leagues.
But, do we know how did Robinson came to the attention of major league scouts – where he played before signing with the Dodgers – baseball’s role in the black community before professional baseball’s integration? The last of the Negro Leagues folded in the 1960s, leaving these and lots of other lingering questions about their rise and fall.
Just in time for the beginning of the baseball season, “Baseball & The Negro Leagues” is on view at the Bronx Museum of the Arts. An expanded exhibition of artifacts from the Negro Leagues is planned for next summer, but for now, this traveling exhibit has 50 artifacts from the Negro League teams on display.