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Robinson Day one for all ages at Busch

Robinson Day one for all ages

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ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals' celebration of Jackie Robinson Day on Tuesday spanned the generations.

Hall of Famer Lou Brock, who was 7 years old when Robinson broke Major League Baseball's color barrier in 1947, represented the club and caught two ceremonial first pitches. A pair of Jackie Robinson Foundation scholars, who were not yet born when Robinson passed away in 1972, threw out the pitches.

As part of the festivities throughout Major League Baseball recognizing Robinson's contributions, the Cardinals played a special video tribute to Robinson on the 61st anniversary of his Major League debut. Lineup cards, bases and home plate all carried Jackie Robinson Day logos at Busch Stadium.

The entire Cardinals team donned No. 42 jerseys in honor of Robinson, wearing the number that has been retired across baseball for one of the game's greatest figures. For the visiting Brewers, Prince Fielder was designated as the lone wearer of No. 42.

Introduced in 2004, Jackie Robinson Day was created to honor the enduring impact of Robinson and his legacy as the first African-American player to break the Major League color barrier. Robinson played his first Major League game at Ebbets Field on April 15, 1947, as a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers. In honor of the 50th Anniversary of Robinson breaking the Major League color barrier in 1997, Robinson's uniform number 42 was retired throughout the Major Leagues.

Robinson's memory lives on today in initiatives such as the Jackie Robinson Foundation, which was founded by Rachel Robinson in 1973 to provide education and leadership development opportunities for minority students with strong capabilities but limited financial resources. Breaking Barriers also honors Robinson, utilizing baseball-themed activities to reinforce literacy skills, mathematics, science and social history in addition to addressing critical issues of character development, such as conflict resolution and self-esteem.

Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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