MLB honors Jackie Robinson every April 15, but the Braves and Cubs will do so almost a month later.
Due to the postponement of the Braves-Cubs series finale last month, the teams wore No. 42 in Monday’s makeup game at Wrigley Field.
“I’m glad I didn’t miss it,” said Braves catcher Tyler Flowers, who would’ve missed the day even without postponement due to being on the disabled list. “I always thought it was a pretty special day just to reflect and remember the people who set the stage before us and what they had to go through, specifically Jackie, amongst some of the other guys he played with, breaking the ground, giving opportunities to plenty of players behind them.”
Robinson is celebrated for breaking the color barrier on April 15 (opening day), 1947, ending roughly 80 years of segregation in baseball.
The league retired his number league-wide in 1997. It started Jackie Robinson Day in 2004 in his honor. Each player, coach and umpire wears his No. 42.
“It’s special,” Cubs outfielder Albert Almora said. “We’re the only ones wearing it today. What Jackie did for this game, and for people all over, it’s special. I’m glad he was in (baseball). It’s great to share such a special moment.”
Robinson played for the Brooklyn Dodgers from 1947-56. The Hall of Famer hit .311 with 147 homers and 734 RBIs. He also stole 197 bases and had an .883 OPS.
“Obviously special, we’re a month late on it,” utilityman Charlie Culberson said. “There’s a reason why Jackie has his own day. More he did, more than baseball. There’s a reason why everyone’s wearing one number. It’s special, and to be able to play in baseball and have the right to play this game.”