With the Cleveland Indians four wins away from the franchise’s first World Series championship since 1948, the mood around the team and the city has been mostly celebratory. Unfortunately, that joy isn’t being shared by Eddie Robinson, the lone surviving member of the 1948 Indians team.
Robinson is upset that he has not been contacted by the team at any point during its run to the 2016 World Series, according to the New York Daily News.
“That’s the funny thing about it. I haven’t heard a damn word from Cleveland. Not a word,” Robinson told the Daily News. “I’m disappointed. It just seems like they would want to talk to any member of the ’48 team, let the press talk to them. I don’t understand it. Maybe they’ll get in touch with me.”
Robinson was the starting first baseman and a key contributor on that 1948 team. During the regular season he hit .254 with 16 homers and 83 RBIs. In the World Series, he was 6-for-21, with two hits and his lone RBI coming in their series-clinching 4-3 win in Game 6 against the Boston Braves. Robinson also shared the spotlight with a star-studded roster that included Hall of Famers Bob Feller, Bob Lemon, Larry Doby, Satchel Paige, Joe Gordon and Lou Boudreau, who served then as player-manager.
For his career, Robinson was a four-time All-Star who finished with 1,146 hits and 172 home runs.
According to the Daily News story, the 95-year-old Paris, Texas, native now lives in Fort Worth. He is also currently the oldest living player to suit up for the New York Yankees.
After learning of his story, many Indians fans are now pushing for Robinson and not Charlie Sheen — in the role of fictional Indians pitcher Rick Vaughn — to throw out the first pitch before World Series Game 1.
About this first pitch nonsense:
Only one option– Eddie Robinson. Only living member of the 1948 team. Would be a shame if Sheen got it.
— The Jim Thome Statue (@JimThomeStatue) October 21, 2016
There’s no word yet from the Indians what their plans are, and there’s no word if Robinson is interested in that role, or just an acknowledgment for holding a special place in Cleveland sports history.
Regardless of what happens, Robinson says it won’t keep him from rooting for the Indians. After all, he was teammates with Tito Francona, the father of current Indians manager Terry Francona, during his final season in 1957. If nothing else, he’ll be rooting for Francona to be a big part of Indians history.
There’s a lot more to Robinson’s story and it’s well worth a read over at the New York Daily News.
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