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Jackie Robinson Day 2024 (US): Activities, History, FAQs, Dates, and Facts

Jackie Robinson Day 2024 honors the debut of African American Major League Baseball player, who was the first African American to be selected for the sport and lead the fight against segregation.

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Jackie Robinson Day 2024 (US) Activities, History, FAQs, Dates, and Facts About Jackie Robinson's accomplishments
Source: Britannica

Jackie Robinson Day 2024 (US): Jackie Robinson Day occurs annually on April 15. We commemorate the debut of Jackie Robinson, one of the greatest symbols of Major League Baseball. Jackie Robinson, who was born into a family of sharecroppers in a segregated Georgia, ascended to the pinnacle of professional athletics in the nation. Robinson established numerous records and led an eventful existence filled with numerous firsts. In addition to being the first African American athlete to be selected for Major League Baseball, he also led the charge against segregation on an army bus as the first African American lieutenant.

Later in life, he assumed the position of vice president of a significant corporation, becoming the first African American to do so. Regardless of the circumstances, Robinson remained a patriot. In 1957, upon removing his baseball cap, he commenced an engaged political career and extended his support to numerous Black causes. On Jackie Robinson Day, coaches, players, commentators, and spectators all don 42 jerseys in unison.

The History of Jackie Robinson Day

Jack ‘Jackie’ Roosevelt Robinson was born to a sharecropper family in Georgia on January 31, 1919. Following his father’s abandonment, his family relocated to California shortly thereafter. From an early age, segregation had a significant impact on Robinson. His companions of African American descent were denied access to opportunities and were confined to their residences.

Robinson developed an early interest in athletics shortly after matriculating to John Muir High School. Under the encouragement of his older brothers, Mark and Frank, he began to give his athletic prowess considerable consideration. He earned lettermanships in all four varsity sports—baseball, football, basketball, and track—within months. Having amassed medals and victory certificates in every discipline in which he participated, he ultimately decided to focus on baseball for which he was honored as the 1938 All-Southland Junior College Baseball Team’s Most Valuable Player. Over the subsequent years, he was conscripted as a second lieutenant into the army.

In 1944, an epochal juncture altered the trajectory of his existence. Jackie, one year into his enlistment, insisted on remaining in the rear seat of a segregated military vehicle. Following his act of defiance, he was rendered a court-martial and levied with baseless charges. The incident not only resulted in his reintegration into baseball but also led him to become aware of the enduring struggle for Black liberation and equality. Following his honorable discharge from the military, he began competing in state-level baseball for the Negro American League, where he attracted the attention of Branch Rickey, general manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Rickey enlisted Robinson in his personal pursuit of baseball integration, thereby becoming the first African American athlete to surpass the segregation line and secure a position as a Major League Baseball player. Jackie was an immediate success on the field. His team won the championship in 1949, and he was selected as M.V.P.

Robinson consistently recognized the significance of his contribution to the perseverance of African American athletes. Although he perceived himself as a catalyst for transformation, he endured years of physical assault, sloganeering, and bigoted abuse. His prowess facilitated the endorsement of the M.L.B. administration in contrast to his uncooperative colleagues. Robinson, who had just completed an extraordinary baseball career, realized that this merely commenced the initial innings of his lifetime. He devoted himself immediately following his retirement to political activism and advocated for numerous Black causes.

50 years after a historic game in which segregation was finally abolished in Major League Basketball, commissioner Bob Selig decommissioned jersey number 42 from all teams in 1997. On April 14, 2004, the day of Jackie Robinson’s début, M.L.B. formally proclaimed the occasion Jackie Robinson Day.

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FAQs for Jackie Robinson Day

Has the number 42 been decommissioned from the M.L.B. as a whole?

Yes. In 1977, the 42nd number jersey was decommissioned permanently from Major League Baseball. Players with 42 or more were permitted to proceed, but any further issues falling within that numerical value were prohibited.

At what age did Jackie Robinson record his initial home run?

On April 18, 1947, Robinson hit his first home run against the New York Giants.

What is Jackie Robinson’s average at bat?

The current batting average of Robinson is 313. During his ten-year professional career, he appeared in 1,382 games and hit 137 home runs for his team.

Jackie Robinson Day 2024 (US) Activities

Perform baseball

Robinson maintained his unwavering devotion to baseball until his dying days. Raise a bat in his honor on April 15 for a memorable baseball game with family and friends.

Advocate against inequality

Robinson possessed an awareness of the racial realities that enveloped him and persisted in his efforts to effect change. He once wrote in his journal, “I am unable to stand and sing the national anthem. I am unable to honor the flag because I recognize that I am a black male living in a predominantly white society.

Observe the film “42”

“42,” which was released in 2013, is a must-see for baseball and Robinson enthusiasts. The late Chadwick Boseman expertly portrays Robinson’s final act of triumph and adversity in the movie.

Five crucial details regarding Jackie Robinson’s accomplishments

Attaining the line

Robinson paved the way for thousands of Black athletes by crossing the 40-year-old line of segregation and becoming the first Black player to participate in major sports in America.

The rookie initiation

Since Robinson’s induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame during his first year of eligibility, no one has accomplished this distinction.

The reigning champion of titles

Robinson elevated the Brooklyn Dodgers to the forefront of national competitive consciousness for the first time by guiding them to six pennants and a world championship.

Contributing to society

In 1970, Jackie established the Jackie Robinson Construction Company with the intention of constructing residences for low-income families.

Beyond that of an athlete

During the peak of the civil rights uprisings in the 1960s, Jackie Kennedy was instrumental in establishing integration as the norm for millions of Americans.

JACKIE ROBINSON DAY DATES

Year Date Day
2024 April 15 Monday
2025 April 15 Tuesday
2026 April 15 Wednesday
2027 April 15 Thursday
2028 April 15 Saturday

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