Major League Baseball is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Negro Leagues on Sunday, with the commemoration across the sport intended to honor the legacies of the men and women who contributed in the past and present.
All players, managers, coaches and umpires are wearing a symbolic Negro Leagues 100th anniversary logo patch during games. It’s derived from the official logo created by the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum and will also be featured on base jewels and lineup cards.
“It’s an exciting day. I’m really excited and proud that Major League Baseball is honoring this 100-year anniversary,” Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said before Sunday’s Freeway Series finale at Angel Stadium.
“The more people have learned and been educated by the Negro Leagues, and really the direct impact it’s had on Major League Baseball. Whether it’s playing at night or having women come to games, and obviously the players from the Negro Leagues that impact Major League Baseball, and there’s many more things.
“I think for Major League Baseball, we’re continuing trying to get people of color back in this game to make it as special and diverse as we possibly can. This is a step in the right direction.”
Roberts is the first African-American to manage the Dodgers in franchise history.
Several teams have additionally played special ballpark and digital engagement throughout the season, including but not limited to wearing Negro Leagues throwback uniforms, educational panels and documentary film screenings.
MLB will share customized content highlighting Negro Leagues players as well as significant historic information about how the legacy of the league has been reflected in the history and present of MLB. The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum designated “#NegroLeagues100” as the hashtag to be used on social media.
In February, MLB and its Players Association (MLBPA) announced a joint donation of $1 million to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, to complement efforts to educate and raise awareness of the impact the Negro Leagues and its players had on the sport and society.
Justin Turner remembers Newk
Back in June, Justin Turner was among those from the Dodgers organization to tip their cap in recognition of the Negro Leagues celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. While doing so, Turner also wrote a heartfelt message to the late Don Newcombe.
Newcombe, in addition to Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella, helped pave the way for African-Americans to play in the Majors. Signed by Branch Rickey, Newcombe spent of eight of 10 career seasons with the Dodgers.
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