I enjoyed the book "Baseball as a Road to God" and one of its chapters looks at the "saints" of baseball. Today is the feast day of one of them: Jack Roosevelt "Jackie" Robinson.
"Jackie Robinson burst onto the scene in 1947, breaking baseball's color barrier and bringing the Negro leagues' electrifying style of play to the majors. He quickly became baseball's top drawing card and a symbol of hope to millions of Americans. With Robinson as the catalyst, the Dodgers won six pennants in his 10 seasons. He dominated games on the base paths, stealing home 19 times while riling opposing pitchers with his daring baserunning style. Robinson was named National League MVP in 1949, leading the loop in hitting (.342) and steals (37), while knocking in 124 runs." (from the Baseball Hall of Fame)
Quotes from Jackie Robinson :
"A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives."
"I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me. All I ask is that you respect me as a human being."
"Life is not a spectator sport. If you're going to spend your whole life in the grandstand just watching what goes on, in my opinion you're wasting your life."
Find out the impact of his life here: National Baseball Hall of Fame, MLB.com and the NY Times.
An interesting op-ed called "Breaking the Truth Barrier" can be found here in the NY Times.