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04/24/08 1:00 AM ET

Nats pay tribute to Robinson

Four players wear No. 42 in honor of baseball great

WASHINGTON -- Before their game against the Mets on Wednesday night, the Nationals honored Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson at Nationals Park.

The club recognized Robinson's contributions to the game with a video and pregame ceremony. Nationals players Ray King, Willie Harris, Lastings Milledge and Dmitri Young donned Robinson's No. 42 in honor of the trailblazer. King, Harris and Milledge also unveiled his number out on the left-field wall.

"Jackie was not only a great ballplayer, he was a great businessman and a great leader in our community once he was done playing the game," King said. "Jackie gave me the opportunity to play the right way."

On April 15, the entire Nationals team wore No. 42 at Shea Stadium on the anniversary of Robinson breaking the color barrier in Major League Baseball in 1947.

Throughout the game on Wednesday, the Nationals' scoreboard featured trivia and facts on Robinson's career. When Robinson broke baseball's color barrier, he brought the Negro Leagues' electrifying style of play to the big leagues.

Robinson quickly became one of the game's top draws, most daring baserunners and a symbol of hope to millions of Americans. Playing the role of catalyst, the Brooklyn Dodgers won six National League pennants in Robinson's 10 seasons. He was named NL MVP in 1949.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.