ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Baseball History: The Movie "42" and the Annual Jackie Robinson Day

Updated on March 3, 2014
Baseball pennant of the Brooklyn Dodgers - "Dem Bums", shown by the clown tramp.
Baseball pennant of the Brooklyn Dodgers - "Dem Bums", shown by the clown tramp. | Source

Life is not a spectator sport. If you're going to spend your whole life in the grandstand, just watching what goes on, in my opinion you're wasting your life.

-- Jackie Robinson

During a superhuman 10-year career 1947 - 1957, Jackie Robinson led the Brooklyn Dodgers to 6 National League titles and one World Series win.
During a superhuman 10-year career 1947 - 1957, Jackie Robinson led the Brooklyn Dodgers to 6 National League titles and one World Series win. | Source

The Robinson Legacy

Jackie Robinson was born the youngest of five siblings in 1919 and his father left shortly thereafter. His mom raised five kids alone and those children accomplished many goals for themselves.

Jackie's older brother Matthew was on the US Olympic Track and Field Team at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. He won the Silver Medal behind Jesse Owens' Gold, which is now on display at The Ohio State University. Not enough is taught about our great athletes of the past.

Jackie not only played four different sports well in high school and college, he lettered in all four - basketball, football, baseball, and track. He went to college and met his future wife there, where she was a nursing student. At this writing, she is 90 years old and proud of the film 42 and Jackie's life story, which was first filmed in 1950 with himself in the lead role.

Not only did this man raised in a poor single-parent family graduate from high school, attend college, and letter in four sports, and fight segregation in the US Army, but he also changed baseball in so many strong ways that his is the only jersey number in the game to be retired. He acomplished all these things while standing up to segregation and bullying alone and with the help of his family and baseball Hall of Famers such as Pee Wee Reese and Branch Rickey, among others.

Now, on Jackie Robinson Day, commemorating his first appearance at Ebbetts Field, south of Park Slope, with the Brooklyn Dodgers, everyone in a uniform on a Major League Baseball Field that day wears the number 42.

Below is video footage of Robinson during one of his famous steals of home base, this one helping to win the 1955 World Series for the Dodgers.

Jackie Robinson Steals Home In the 1955 World Series

America's Pastime Is Back

The biopic 42 is one of the best films of 2013. It is entertaining and historically accurate, except for some added dramatized dialogue, uplifting, and strong. Watching this film spurred me to plan to attend some baseball games this year. It brought back my love of the game as much as Branch Rickey told Jackie Robinson he did for him (Rickey).

The film is rated PG-13 for themes and language, but younger kids can watch 42 with some parental input. The night I saw the film, a full Little League team attended in uniform with their coaches and a couple of parents in tow. The kids asked questions as they enjoyed the fun parts of the film. coming away with a greater understanding of Jackie Robinson's accomplishments for baseball, family, and equality.

The diverse audience that night was vocal in its appreciation of the film and baseball history. Afteer the closing credits, people did not want to leave the theater. They stood in the lobby, talking among themselves in groups and discussing the film with studio reps.

A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.

-- Jackie Robinson


The Stars Of the Film

Star Chadwick Boseman looks so much like the young Jack Robinson, especially from a certain angle, that it's eerie. My favorite scenes are those where he's preparing to steal bases, skittering back and forth just beyond his base and annoying the pitcher. I never saw Branch Rickey, but I felt that I got to know him through Harrison Ford's character portrayal. Ford looked like he had a good time with the part.

Many of the audience on the night I was fortunate to see this film were enchanted by the parts taken by Harrison Ford, Andre Holland, Nicole Beharie, Max Gail, T.R. Knight, Chris Meloni. -- And consider screwball Texan Alan Tudyk - he's lucky someone doesn't smack him on the street, mistaking him for the real Phillies' bigotted manager Ben Chapman!

The first I saw of Tudyk was in 2007's Death At a Funeral. He was the nude dancing on the roof during a wake, high on designer drugs he accidentally ingested. He was the funniest thing I'd seen in decades. In 42, he's the most bigotted. In TV's Suburgatory, he is one of the most silly. He certainly has an acting range.

Jackie Robinson Day 4/15 has new meaning after seeing this film.

Jackie, we've got no army. There's virtually nobody on our side. No owners, no umpires, very few newspapermen. And I'm afraid that many fans will be hostile. We'll be in a tough position. We can win only if we can convince the world that I'm doing this because you're a great ballplayer, a fine gentleman.

-- Branch Rickey

Congressional Gold Medal

Mrs. Rachel Robinson accepts the Congressional Gold Medal for husband Jackie Robinson (1919 - 1972). (From left to right: Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, former President George W. Bush, Rachel Robinson, Congressman Dennis Hastert.)
Mrs. Rachel Robinson accepts the Congressional Gold Medal for husband Jackie Robinson (1919 - 1972). (From left to right: Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, former President George W. Bush, Rachel Robinson, Congressman Dennis Hastert.) | Source
The Brooklyn Dodgers
The Brooklyn Dodgers | Source

Jackie Robinson Day Celebrated BIG at Wrigley Field

A fitting tribute to a ball player who deserves to be remembered:

Jackie Robinson Day Celebrated BIG at Wrigley Field in 2013 to Highlight Film Biography "42"

  • 42: The True Story of An American Legend was released to the public in American theaters on April 12, 2013 to large crowds of baseball and history fans. However, the Chicago Cubs wanted to do something spectacular to honor Jackie Robinson and his history. At the 66th anniversary of Jackie Robinson first day in the majors, the Cubs all wore number 42 as did many other teams in MLB. Even better, the film cast of 42 was present for the first pitch of the game and the Seventh Inning Stretch. It was a great time and an appropriate, fun tribute to a great ballplayer that broke the color line with help from those inside the major leagues that had faith in him.

A Mini Bio Of Jackie Robinson

He was the only player I ever saw in a rundown who could be safe more often than out. He ran as if his head was on a swizzle, back and forth, back and forth, until he could get out of it.

-- Bobby Bragan

On the Ed Sullivan Show


Song "Mr. Robinson"


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)