Monday, February 21, 2011

Campy and Newk

I am currently reading Jules Tygiel's "Baseball's Great Experiment:  Jackie Robinson and His Legacy."

The most interesting thing so far has been a quote from Branch Rickey - "It might not be so good to sign Robinson with other and better players unsigned."  Shortly thereafter, the Dodgers inked Roy Campanella and Don Newcombe to contracts.

In other words, Brooklyn considered Jackie to be the perfect man to break the color barrier because of the quality of his character, but not as talented as such negro leaguers as Campy and Newk.

In retrospect, though Roy Campanella became a Hall of Fame catcher and Newcombe was a bulldog in the rotation, Jackie Robinson electrified the National League and retired as one of the greatest second basemen of all time.

Not bad for a character guy.

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