Nationals Pay Tribute to Jackie Robinson

John E. DeFreitas | 4/21/2010, 11:03 a.m.

Photo # 8275 - Photo by John E. DeFreitas
Amanda Patterson, Jackie Robinson Foundation scholar, gets a few pointers from Nationals infielder Willie Harris prior to her throwing the ceremonial first pitch.

Photo # 8371- Photo by John E. DeFreitas
The Nationals came from behind to defeat the Brewers 5-3on Friday. In this photo Willie Harris is tagged by Rickie weeks as he tries to steal second base during the second inning.

Photo # 8320- Photo by John E. DeFreitas
Nationals infielder Willie Harris attempts to save the Casey McGehee home run, a solo shot to right field in the second inning. Harris was the only player to wear a #42 jersey during last Friday€s home game against the Brewers.

The Washington Nationals dedicated last Friday€s game (April 16) as a day to remember one of baseball's greatest pioneers, Jackie Robinson. Robinson was the first to break the color barrier and bring the Negro League's electrifying style of play to the big leagues in 1947.

€When Jack stepped onto EbbetsField on April 15, 1947, he set a new course for American history both in the game and in society,€ said Rachel Robinson. €I am grateful that Major league baseball continues to honor his enduring impact, along with the values he lived by, both on and off the baseball field.€
A league-wide initiative to honor Robinson€s legacy was held on April 15 to coincide with the day of Robinson's barrier-breaking debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers. All National players wore Robinson's number 42 during their road game in Philadelphia. During the National's tribute on April 16, infielder Willie Harris, a native of Robinson's hometown of Cairo, Ga., donned the Number 42, as yet another, homage to the significant role Robinson played in baseball history.