Dodgers and Braves Ready to Honor the History of Civil Rights in Annual Game

Aaron Harang (8-7, 3.376) vs. Ben Sheets (4-2, 2.13)

Dodgers Lineup: vs. Braves

Victorino 7

M.Ellis 4

Kemp 8

Ethier 9

Ramirez 6

Loney 3

Cruz 5

Ellis 2

Harang 1

The Annual Civil Rights game began in 2007, and it originally marked the official end to Spring Training. In 2009, the game was moved to the regular season. It’s intent is to embrace baseball’s history of African-American players and to get African-American players interested in playing in the future. Along with the game, Major League Baseball honors three pioneers of civil rights with the Beacon Awards. The three awards are:  Beacon of Life Award, Beacon of Change Award, and Beacon of Hope Award. The Civil Rights Game has been played at Turner in Field in Atlanta Georgia for 2011 and 2012. The Three-game series with the Dodgers also is incorporated into the Civil Rights Game Weekend for which it will be a time to honor those on and off the baseball field who have been instrumental in garnering equal rights for all Americans.

Don Newcombe will be one of the guests of honor at today’s Civil Rights Game. Along with Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella, Newcombe was a color barrier breaking pioneer for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1940′s and 1950′s. Newcombe was the first African-American pitcher to start a World Series Game and first to win 20 games. Newcombe is also a spokesperson for those with alcohol and substance abuse problems. Congressman John Lewis and the band Earth, Wind & Fire will also be honored. They will receive their Beacon Awards in a pregame ceremony. Matt Kemp will give Newcombe his award.

The game will feature Aaron Harang on the mound for the Dodgers. Harang pitched well last time out, and he picked up the win after allowing

Aaron Harang will try to quiet the bats of the Braves today. Photo: Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE

2 earned runs on 5 hits over 6 innings of work against Pittsburgh. Harang was involved in a no-decision against Atlanta back on April 24th. The Big Show is 1-2 with a 4.53 ERA in his career against the Braves. Much of the Atlanta lineup has hit him well in the past. Michael Bourne, David Ross, Chipper Jones, Brian McCann, and Dan Uggla has all had success against the right-hander, and they have all gone deep against him.

 

Ben Sheets has been successful so far in his comeback. Photo: Dale Zanine-US PRESSWIRE

Ben Sheets hadn’t pitched in the Majors for almost two years before joining the Braves in the second-half. He became a free agent after his 2010 season with the Oakland A’s, but he missed the entire 2011 season after undergoing elbow surgery.  Since coming back, Sheets has made six starts with the Braves, and he’s made 5 quality starts out of the 6. Last time out against the Mets, Sheets lost after allowing 4 earned runs on 8 hits in 6 innings. Sheets is 3-6 with a 3.78 ERA in his career against the Dodgers.

The Dodgers and Giants are continuing to seesaw back and forth between first and second place in the NL West standings. After losing last night in 11 innings against the Braves, the Dodgers slipped back to 1/2 game out of first since the Giants won their game versus the Padres. The Dodgers will try to squeak one out against the tough Braves team who are now 21 games above .500.

The game will begin at 4:10 pm, and it will be televised on Prime Ticket. Join us afterwards for the score and recap.

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Tags: Aaron Harang Atlanta Braves Ben Sheets Civil Rights Game Don Newcombe Los Angeles Dodgers Matt Kemp

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