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April 15 marks 65th anniversary of Robinson's debut on Brooklyn Dodgers, making him the first African American to play in baseball's major leagues.
Sunday marks the 65th anniversary of Robinson's debut on the Brooklyn Dodgers, making him the first African American to play in baseball's major leagues.
On April 15, 1947, Brooklyn baseball executive Branch Rickey picked Robinson to break the color line, not because he was the best player, but because he thought Robinson had the character to withstand the hatred he would face on and off the field, writes CBS News.
Some of Robinson's own teammates would go on to refuse to play with him and he was confronted by decades of racism.
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ESPN reports that year Robinson would go on to earn the first-ever MLB Rookie of the Year award then win the MVP award in 1949 after racking up 124 RBIs and a .342 batting average.
Even after he left the game, he continued to work toward racial equality.
In a 1957 letter to then Vice President Richard Nixon, Robinson wrote: "I know that you realize that in the tasks that lie ahead all-freedom-loving Americans will want to share in achieving a society in which no man is penalized or favored solely because of his race, color, religion, or national origin."
Around the United States on Sunday, baseball fans were remembering the legend.
Prior to Sunday's Angeles-Yankees game, a special ceremony was set to commemorate the 65th anniversary with players wearing the Hall of Famer's No. 42, according to Fox News.