4/15 Thanks, Jackie

Jackie is the reason I’m playing today. His importance to the world is more than just baseball. There’s the integration of baseball, of course, but the Civil Rights movement, the whole nine yards — my parents went through it. Without Jackie, there’s no Hank, there’s no Ken Griffey Jr., there’s no Ryan Howard, there’s no me. Every single day I think every player who is a minority in this game — all the way to Fukudome, Ichiro — you have to be thankful for what Jackie did and what he went through. I think what’s missed is nobody knows what he really went through. At the end of his career, he probably aged 20, 30 years, more than everyone else, because of the beating that he took mentally — I just couldn’t imagine. And for him to put up the numbers he did and to be the great player and Hall of Famer that he was, that’s phenomenal. I owe it all to Jackie.

– Marlon  

8 Comments

Thank you for writing this.

What pioneers like Jackie did for this country was so amazing and so necessary, I hope people realize how incredible he and people who share his courage are.

It’s great to have you here in Chicago, sir. Looking forward to this summer in large part because of your contributions. And again, thank you.

Go CUBS!

Great post, Marlon. Jackie’s talent was only surpassed by his courage. I’m proud to have players like you representing #42 today.

Good post Marlon. Its kinda cool seeing all of you guys wearing his number too- I am not INCREDIBLY familiar with the brewers bullpen so zoning in and out of the game made it confusing as to who was on the mound for them but its all worth the tribute to Mr. Jackie Robinson for overcoming the racial barrier and making an impact not only on his ballclub but opening doors for guys like Ernie Banks. Its a shame that they couldn’t have broken down the barriers earlier- I would’ve liked to see what someone like Satchal Paige could’ve done in the pros during his prime years.

I love your attitude Marlon. Granted i’ve never met you but you seem like a relaxed guy who really wants to win and will have nothing but a positive influence on the rest of the ballclub. Somebody with your attitude and leadership skills is a valuable asset and I feel lucky to have you around in the clubhouse. We’ve been missing a personality like yours and I really hope you enjoy your time in center field.

I also hope that you don’t mind the fact that every single writer in this town is going to compare you to your former teammate Milton Bradley. From what i’ve seen from you (watching you down at wrigley on opening day), I doubt you will have no problem getting the bleachers to fall in love with you. Even from day 1 when you tried to throw that sign back into the bleachers rather than having it confiscated by the groundskeepers- you’re making a good impression- and you’re also driving the baseball (which doesn’t hurt around here.

As I said before I feel like we’re lucky to have you- and as a fan I am really excited to see what you’re capable of when the wind is blowing out to left! Good Luck with the ‘stros.

It is beyond doubt that Jackie Robinson was not just a great baseball player, but also a man with unbelievable strength of character to endure the prejudice he encountered when he entered the ‘Majors.’
People often forget though, where he came from, and the other great Negro League players who proved themselves better than their major league counter-parts time and again when the 2 leagues met each year. Players like Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson and of course the 1st black coach(3rd base for the Cubs) and Cubs own longtime scout, Buck O’Neil. These were the men that paved the way for Jackie. But were they bitter? I would recommend reading the auto-biography “I Was Right on Time” for all those who do not know much about this part of baseball’s checkered past-without doubt, an honest, frank and charming account.

Marlon – great to have you on board… the batting line-up seems so much more potent and long with you there…

And you Hustle… like Reed.

Well put, Marlon. Let’s not forget about Larry Doby, too.

Welcome to Chicago. Go Cubs go.

Marlon,

Thank You for being a class act and a great locker room guy so far. I appreciate your hustle so far this year as a Cubs Fan its nice to see from the players every once in a while. I enjoyed reading your blogs and hope you guys have a great rest of the year.

-Dan
cubbieblue27.mlblogs.com

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