The characters of Jackie Robinson and Branch Rickey are the central focus of the new movie 42.
By Rob Rains
Red Schoendienst does not have to see the movie 42 to remember how hard it was for Jackie Robinson to break the color barrier in major league baseball. He was there as it was happening.
Schoendienst was the Cardinals’ starting second baseman in 1947 when Branch Rickey brought Robinson to the Brooklyn Dodgers, the story which is told in the movie premiering around the country on Friday.
“What he did was hard,” Schoendienst said. “It was pretty tough for him to come in the way he did.”
The movie tries to depict some of the taunts and abuse Robinson had to endure as he became the first African-American to play in the major leagues.
There is only one incident shown in the movie involving the Cardinals, when Enos Slaughter spiked Robinson during a game on Aug. 20, allegedly on purpose.
Newspaper accounts at the time did say that Robinson was spiked as Slaughter ran across first base, in the 11th inning of the game at Ebbets Field, but he did not admit to doing it intentionally.
“I’ve never deliberately spiked anyone in my life,” Slaughter was quoted as saying in an Associated Press story the following day which was published in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
. “Anybody who does don’t belong in baseball. It was an accident, pure and simple. I hope it is not serious.” [To continue reading this article click here.
The above mentioned article also contains a trailer for the movie.