Major League Baseball has been around since the year 1876. So you’d think that there’s not much it hasn’t seen. But a game played in front of zero fans? That’s a first.
Today, the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Chicago White Sox, 8-2, in front of an empty Camden Yards. Fans were left out of the stadium, and the game was pushed up to a 2 p.m. start time, in response to violent protests against police in Baltimore.
The previous two games against the White Sox had been postponed, and instead of calling off the final game in the series the league decided to play but to keep the stands empty in the interest of safety.
Average attendance for a Baltimore Orioles game at Camden Yards this season has been 33,289. But on Wednesday, the Orioles will host the Chicago White Sox in front of zero fans.
Major League Baseball announced the decision this afternoon. It’s just the latest step the city, team, and Major League Baseball have taken in response to increasing unrest in Baltimore.
Cal Ripken Jr. played 21 seasons as shortstop and third baseman for the Baltimore Orioles. He is a Hall of Famer and an Orioles legend. Ripken broke Lou Gehrig’s record of consecutive games played, playing in 2,632 straight games. It is one of the greatest records in baseball, and perhaps in all of sports.
Recently, SI Kids spoke with Ripken about his take on how kids and their parents approach playing sports, some of his personal accomplishments throughout his amazing career, and how fans can win a chance to play catch with him.
An American game of baseball typically includes a wild crowd trying to catch every foul ball, an abundance of hot dogs, and a winner and a loser. In Japan, baseball games feel very different. Fans throw back the foul balls to the home team to show respect, fast food menus include bento boxes and sushi, and games may end in a tie.
On a recent trip to Japan, I attended the game between the Tokyo Yakult Swallows and the Chunichi Dragons on April 7 at the Jingu Stadium in Tokyo. Attending this game was a culture shock!
Before the Civil Rights Game and on Jackie Robinson Day at Dodger Stadium last Wednesday, I had the chance to interview Dodgers skipper Don Mattingly in the team’s dugout. We talked about what it meant to wear Robinson's number 42 for the game, and what he admired most about the icon and hero. I was also interested in Mattingly's opinion on what Jackie Robinson would think about baseball in 2015. He told me that he though Robinson might be a little disappointed with the lack of African Americans playing the game and with kids, generally, showing a declining interest in baseball.
The Los Angeles Dodgers hosted Major League Baseball’s annual Civil Rights Game on Wednesday, and for the first time it was played on MLB’s annual Jackie Robinson Day. But Jackie wasn’t the only Robinson being honored this year. Hall of Famer Frank Robinson received a special award commemorating the 40th anniversary of his becoming the first African American manager in MLB history.
Kid Reporter Max Ferregur had a chance to speak with Frank Robinson before the Civil Rights Game. Robinson talked about his memories of Jackie Robinson, what civil rights means to him, and the work baseball still needs to do when it comes to African American managers. (Currently, there is only one: Seattle’s Lloyd McClendon.) Watch his interview below.
The Los Angeles Dodgers hold a special place in the history of both baseball and the civil rights movement. That’s all thanks to one man whose courage, wisdom, and determination proved that the battle for equal rights could be won.
On April 15, 1947, Jackie Roosevelt Robinson made his major league debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers and became the first African American to break baseball’s color barrier. Robinson was a great player — he earned National League Rookie of the Year honors in 1947 and in 1949 was named NL MVP when he led the league in hitting with a .342 average, had 37 steals, and a career-high 124 RBIs — but he became an American hero. He was strong enough to battle against hatred by putting up a fight without fighting back. He battled with his bat, glove, and base running skills.
Since 2004, Major League Baseball has honored Robinson and his importance to the game — and America — by celebrating Jackie Robinson Day every April 15. But yesterday’s Jackie Robinson game in LA was something special. It was also MLB’s annual Civil Rights Game, which not only celebrated Robinson but the contributions of African Americans to the game of baseball.