The Washington Post Sunday - - Sunday Morning On The Air -

Last Sun­day’s col­umn about the 60th an­niver­sary of Jackie Robin­son break­ing the color bar­rier in Ma­jor League Base­ball struck a chord among fans and read­ers.

I was 3 years old, liv­ing in Mon­treal, when Jackie joined the Roy­als. My fa­ther thought sports a waste of time and money. But he rec­og­nized the long-term im­pact on so­ci­ety that Jackie would have. I be­came a sports fan, base­ball fan and Dodger fan dur­ing the 1952 World Se­ries largely be­cause of Jackie. For years there­after, when­ever my fa­ther ridiculed my sports in­ter­est, my come­back would be Jackie Robin­son. Robin­son’s im­pact tran­scended base­ball and sport. Ben Mirman, Gaithers­burg I couldn’t write it any bet­ter than that.

As a fan of the Bos­ton Braves, what I re­mem­ber most about Jackie Robin­son was his unique abil­ity to vir­tu­ally take over the game by what­ever means.

This was a guy who could vir­tu­ally steal first base and when he got to first base, to­tally dis­rupt the other team and its pitcher. To his ev­er­last­ing credit, he was by far the most as­sertive, ag­gres­sive and take-charge base­ball com­peti­tor of his time. Jim De­laney, Po­tomac MLB has done well try­ing to ed­u­cate fans about Robin­son’s im­pact on the coun­try. But more needs to be done, par­tic­u­larly among young­sters in the schools.

We are very for­tu­nate that the guy (Stan Kas­ten) who was chiefly re­spon­si­ble for the At­lanta Braves suc­cess and Turner Field is now run­ning things in Wash­ing­ton. I am ab­so­lutely con­vinced that the Ted Lerner-Kas­ten plan for the Na­tion­als is the right way to go. So for now, sit back and en­joy the fact that we have base­ball in D.C. Walt Peter­son, Falls Church Kas­ten has our re­spect. Still, he should have spent more money on the 2007 team.

As a pub­lic ser­vice to your read­ers, please ad­vise them to avoid the half-smokes at RFK. Ben’s Chili Bowl half-smokes they are not. Can we get Ben’s Chili Bowl into the new sta­dium? Corey Henry, Wash­ing­ton While Ben’s Chili Bowl would be wel­come at the new ball­park, sev­eral qual­ity start­ing pitch­ers and big bats would be even bet­ter.

It’s only April 19 but at least the Nats have as many wins (five) to show for their $36 mil­lion pay­roll as do the Cubs, they of the $136 mil­lion man (Al­fonso So­ri­ano) and about $300 mil­lion in off­sea­son spend­ing on free agents. Money isn’t ev­ery­thing. I won­der if So­ri­ano is hav­ing sec­ond thoughts? Ray Sch­nei­der, Frostburg, Md. While I’m not So­ri­ano’s ac­coun­tant, I feel cer­tain he does not have sec­ond thoughts about join­ing the Cubs.

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