Results tagged ‘ Frank Robinson ’

Civil Rights Game ceremonies

I knew a top-notch ceremony would be held before the Civil Rights Game on Saturday but my expectations were definitely exceded. Everything was done well, but not overdone. It was really cool seeing Hank Aaron, Muhammad Ali and Bill Cosby ride in from center field on golf carts and get standing ovations. Cosby wore a Homestead Grays Negro League jersey.


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Each icon, and MLB Beacon Awards honorees, had brief tributes to their lives on the big videoboard.

Reds players especially made a concerted effort to see Aaron up close after the tribute was over. David Weathers had his son, Ryan, pose for a picture with the former home run king.

BeBe Winans gave a stellar rendition of the National Anthem. In something you rarely see nailed perfectly, the flyover came right at the end of the song. It was three A-10 planes from Willow Grove Naval Air Reserve Station in Pennsylvania.

The uniforms for both clubs were throwbacks from 1964 — the year the Civil Rights Act was passed.

The White Sox were in solid light blue unis with black numbers…and numbers on the right sleeve. It was a bit unsettling at first, but kind of cool. The Reds had the white pinstriped caps going and in a twist you never see in MLB, the last names were under the numbers. I also think it was the color blue inside the wishbone ‘C’ on the front.

Frank Robinson was accompanied by five Negro League veterans when he threw the ceremonial first pitch. Tony Perez was doing the catching.

If MLB ever considers Cincinnati for an All-Star game, it just saw a strong audition. Commissioner Bud Selig is here along with what I was told was nearly 100 staff members from the league office.


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This was taken just as the ceremonies got underway.



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Taken during the National Anthem.

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Civil Rights Game press conf.

Today I covered the press conference that announced the MLB Beacon Award winners during Civil Rights Game weekend June 19-21 in Cincinnati. The game, between the Reds at White Sox, is on June 20.

The Beacon Award winners are Muhammad Ali, Bill Cosby and Hank Aaron — some pretty huge names.

During the press conf, I was amazed by the group of former Negro League players. It’s pretty cool to have that history in one room, along with Frank Robinson.

“That’s a tremendous lineup,” Robinson said of Ali, Cosby and Aaron. “It’s too bad they couldn’t get somebody to hit fourth. That’s a great group.”

Robinson was a 2008 Beacon of Life winner. Below is a picture from today with Chuck Harmon, the Reds’ first African American player, Robinson and FSN’s George Grande.


grande-harmon-robinson.jpgAnd here is a group shot of everyone at today’s press conference: 


Among those attending the press conference today were:

                   Frank Robinson – Cincinnati Reds and National Baseball Hall of Famer
                   Dusty Baker – Manager, Cincinnati Reds
                   Phil Castellini – Chief Operating Officer, Cincinnati Reds
                   Jimmie Lee Solomon – Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations, MLB
                   Rick Walls – Executive Director, Reds Hall of Fame and Museum
                   Chuck Harmon – First African-American player for the Cincinnati Reds
                   Don Johnson – Negro Leagues Veteran
                   Tom Turner – Negro Leagues Veteran
                   Ron Warren – Negro Leagues Veteran

Robinson to lead parade

From the Reds PR dept:


The Cincinnati Reds and Findlay Market have announced that Reds great Frank Robinson will be the Grand Marshall for the 90th Findlay Market Opening Day Parade on Monday, April 6, 2009.

Robinson will also be the Honorary Captain of the Opening Day game vs. the New York Mets.  

Robinson played for the Reds from 1956-1965. He was inducted into the Reds Hall of Fame in 1978 and Major League Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in 1982.

Also making an special appearance in the parade will be Reds starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo.

“We are very excited to have both a Reds Hall of Famer and a current Reds player in the Findlay Market Opening Day this year,” said Phil Castellini, Reds chief operating officer. “The parade is one of the oldest traditions in all of baseball, and it’s the first time in recent history that a current Reds player will be in the parade.”

Also from the Reds on Opening Day tix:

Opening Day Ticket Sale on Fountain Square
2,000 tickets available Saturday at 9 a.m.
CINCINNATI (March 18, 2009) — The Cincinnati Reds and Fountain Square have announced that
2,000 tickets for the April 6 Opening Day game will go on sale Saturday, March 21 at 9 a.m.
The Opening Day tickets include 1,000 “Standing Room Only” and 1,000 “View Level” tickets to the
season opener vs. the New York Mets.
Ticket prices are $22 for Standing Room Only and $29 for View Level.
There is a limit of six tickets per person. Cash and major credit cards will be accepted.
Fans interested in forming a line for the tickets can start at 9 a.m. on Thursday. Fountain Square
Management Group will provide overnight security.
These tickets are only available on Fountain Square, not at the ballpark ticket windows.
Reds mascots will make appearances on Fountain Square along with Reds partners and sponsors.
The Fountain Square video board will show two Reds spring training games live on FOX Sports Ohio
from Sarasota:
• Thursday, March 19 – Reds vs. Red Sox at 7 p.m.
• Friday, March 20 – Reds vs. Astros at 1 p.m.
From Thursday through Saturday morning, Reds-themed entertainment will be shown on Fountain
Square’s video board in addition to selected NCAA basketball games.
This is the second year in a row that the Reds have offered Opening Day tickets to fans on Fountain
Square. Last year’s tickets sold out in about one hour.

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