(CBS News) – Today, every player in every big league stadium in America will be wearing the number 42, Jackie Robinson's number. Because today marks the 65th anniversary of Jackie Robinson stepping out of the Brooklyn Dodgers' dugout and becoming the first African American to play in Major League Baseball.
Robinson made his debut on April 15, 1947, against the Philadelphia Phillies at Ebbets Field. The game was called after five innings because of rain delays, and it was decided to finish the game the next day. In that final game, he got the start at second base. The Dodgers lost 1-4. Robinson's first major league hit came in his third game, a double off the left field wall in Cincinnati's Coaker Liddle. He ended up with seven hits in 19 at-bats that season.
After one year in Brooklyn, Robinson was traded to the Giants. He spent two seasons with them before joining the Dodgers again in 1949. During his time with the Dodgers, they won the National League pennant both years he was with the team. But they were defeated by the Yankees in the World Series each time.
Jackie Robinson retired after the 1950 season. He died in 1974 at age 44 due to complications from diabetes.
Today's athletes who wear the number 42 include Robinson's family members, baseball players, and other celebrities.
Mariano Rivera is a pitcher. Mariano Rivera, who made his MLB debut in 1995 prior to the retirement of No. 42, was the final player to wear the number on a regular basis when he retired in 2013. Since 2004, April 15th has been designated as Jackie Robinson Day by Major League Baseball. In recent years, some players have worn #42 in honor of Robinson.
Rivera's final season was 2013. That year, he finished with an amazing $20 million contract and did not record an out until his 497th game, finishing with 471 saves over his career. He is only the second pitcher (and first Yankee) to win the MVP Award. The other one is Joe DiMaggio in 1936.
Number 42 has been worn by several notable people outside of baseball including two United States Presidents (John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson)
Number 42 has been worn by several famous baseball players including Hall of Famers Jimmie Foxx, Mel Ott, and Duke Snider and managers Billy Southworth and John McGraw.
In 2012, Ryan Braun wore 42 during his appeal process after being accused of violating baseball's drug policy. The case was eventually settled out of court to avoid any influence on Braun's future discipline by the MLB. In January 2014, Braun was suspended for the entire 2015 season by baseball's disciplinary committee for violating MLB's drug policy.
Every Major League Baseball player will wear Jackie Robinson's No. 42 on Monday to honor the guy who broke baseball's color barrier on April 15, 1947. That's when Robinson made his debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers, becoming the first black player in the major leagues.
Robinson had been trying to get a job with a major league team since 1945 when he finally got one from the Dodgers. In the minors, he hit.312 with 26 home runs and 101 RBIs in only 50 games for the Dodgers' minor league club in 1947. The big league club was playing in Chicago when the season started and didn't return to Brooklyn until late May because of scheduling conflicts with National League teams that were playing each other. During that time, Robinson worked out with the team but was not allowed to play due to the color line that had been put in place by many owners before 1947 (many others had integrated their rosters but not their stadiums).
When the Dodgers did return to Brooklyn following their first series in Chicago, they played at Ebbets Field, which was then under new management (the previous owner had died). On April 15, 1947, the team played its first game at its new stadium while Robinson waited in the clubhouse to be called into the game as a pinch-hitter against Cincinnati.