on 10 april 1947 (the year i was born), brooklyn dodgers president branch rickey announced he had purchased the contract of jackie robinson from the montreal royals. robinson became the first black player to join a u.s. major league baseball team. i will always have affection for the old brooklyn dodgers, and for branch rickey, for making that decision. and i will always admire jackie robinson for his courage and calm in the face of the initial wave of racist taunts and abuse. he was a class act, and a great second baseman.