Sign in to follow this  
CodeG

Should Clemente's #21 be retired by MLB

Should #21 be retired by the MLB?  

56 members have voted

You do not have permission to vote in this poll, or see the poll results. Please sign in or register to vote in this poll.

Recommended Posts

Should Roberto Clemente's number 21 be universally retired by the MLB? Why or why not?

 

Information, in case you don't know

Currently there are only 2 numbers in sports universally retired (Wayne Gretzky #99 in the NHL, and Jackie Robinson's #42 in the MLB)

Gretzky's because he is the undoubtably best hockey player all time

Jackie Robinson's because he was the first black player in the MLB (or at least since the AL was created) 

 

Clemente while he wasn't the first hispanic player in the MLB, he was the first great one. He had over 1,400 runs, .317 average, and is one of the few 3,000 hits club (with 3,000 exactly). But despite his great play, he is remembered more for his off-field performance, he was known for helping out the needy and spending lots of time with fans and the less fortunate. It was this that lead to his death in 1972, during Christmas a earthquake hit Nicaragua and Clemente organized a plan to send supplies, he would hire a pilot and a plane and fly the supplies there, as well as himself. The plane crashed on New Years Eve 1972, Clemente's body was never found. 

 

The argument against is that he has 'already been commemorated enough', MLB celebrates Roberto Clemente Day every year, as well as handing out the Roberto Clemente Award to the best humanitarian in baseball. And that if they did wouldn't then other players numbers get retired? Babe Ruth was the best player (batter and pitcher), Gehrig, Mays, Aaron, Cobb, Jeter, or even Ichiro being the first great (and really only potential HOF) to player in the MLB

 

The argument for is that, while he wasn't the first hispanic player, he was the first great one and his contributions outside the sport will be unmatched, and that the league retired Robinson's number due to breaker the mold of the 'color barrier'. They say "Robinson opened a door for non-whites to play in the MLB, and Clemente created the bridge between whites and non-whites" So if the league is going to retire Robinson's shouldn't they retire Clemente's as well? 

 

 

My opinion, the league should, but I can see why they wouldn't. But, I also feel that they should even if #21 is only retired by the NL 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No.

 

I don't think Gretzky's number should have been retired either.  Jackie Robinson was singular.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm actually against retiring numbers in general (though Robinson is an exception). Clemente already has an award and day named after him; that's more than enough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, CodeG said:

Babe Ruth was the best player (batter and pitcher), Gehrig, Mays, Aaron, Cobb, Jeter, or even Ichiro being the first great (and really only potential HOF) to player in the MLB

 

1

Jeter was hardly even the best player on his team throughout his career. 

Also, no. I agree with Gothamite: Robinson was singular.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, (probably)notabandwagonfan said:

Jeter was hardly even the best player on his team throughout his career. 

Also, no. I agree with Gothamite: Robinson was singular.

Hell, Jeter wasn't even the best shortstop on his team for a lot of his career.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Dolphins Dynasty said:

I'm actually against retiring numbers in general (though Robinson is an exception). Clemente already has an award and day named after him; that's more than enough.

Don't forget his bridge! But yeah, Clemente was a great player who is properly recognized.

 

I'm fine with Gretzky's #99 being retired because of his sheer dominance of the game and the prominence he brought to the NHL (which they naturally squandered). And yet some people still think he wasn't as good as BAWBBY FACKIN AWWWW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say no as well. If he had not died so tragically I don't think we'd hold him up with as much respect. He did do a lot to raise the profile of athletes as humanitarians outside of baseball though.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I read a biography on Clemente and he was an important and interesting guy.  That said, mark me down for Robinson-only.  That was the most important impact of sports on society.

 

As an aside, I would say if it were to happen it would be all of MLB.  There’s just not enough difference between the leagues anymore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, smzimbabwe said:

If they hadn't retired it and made it unavailable, would anyone else dare to wear 99 in the NHL?

Some Puerto Rican Muslim from Mississauga would do it and make everyone really mad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Gothamite said:

No.

 

I don't think Gretzky's number should have been retired either.  Jackie Robinson was singular.

i agree with you on Gretzky.  i never like retiring numbers league wide for one person.  Jackie Robinson, i am OK with since he did a lot more for society then Gretzky did.    

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, goalieboy82 said:

will the NBA retire Jason Collins number down the line (first gay player)

 

That's difficult to say, considering that we may have had other gay athletes in the NBA in the past who didn't have the courage to open up.

 

Because of that, I say no, but in terms of actually opening up? Eh... I don't know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Dolphins Dynasty said:

 

That's difficult to say, considering that we may have had other gay athletes in the NBA in the past who didn't have the courage to open up.

 

Because of that, I say no, but in terms of opening up? Eh... I don't know.

would say that there have been other gay athletes in the 4 major North American sports in the past so would those leagues retire there number.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, goalieboy82 said:

will the NBA retire Jason Collins number down the line (first gay player)

I tend to doubt that.  The addition of Jackie Robinson to a major league roster was a huge deal.  Jason Collins's distinction as the first openly-gay active player was a milestone, but it was a different era.  I don't want to minimize his experiences, but there was a lot more division around Robinson.  Fans, media, players, coaches legitimately believed (and said as much) that he should not be allowed in MLB.  I really don't think there were a lot of people suggesting Collins should be barred from the league; just people that did not want to hear about because of their own insecurity or whatever. Segregation was not quite the factor with Collins as it was with Robinson.  Again, it was a big deal and a key milestone. Actually, I always envisioned the first openly-gay male team-sport athlete to be a bigger star; someone with a secure roster spot.  The fact that it was a journeyman on a ten-day contract was not how I envisioned it.  That fact probably also makes number retirement even less likely.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, Dolphins Dynasty said:

 

That's difficult to say, considering that we may have had other gay athletes in the NBA in the past who didn't have the courage to open up.

 

Because of that, I say no, but in terms of actually opening up? Eh... I don't know.

 

I dunno. Who’s to say that there weren’t black athletes in MLB before Robinson that just didn’t open up?  It’s kinda the same thing. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Gothamite said:

No.

 

I don't think Gretzky's number should have been retired either.  Jackie Robinson was singular.

also with Gretzky, what if someone comes a long and breaks his records, will the NHL retire that persons number.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, goalieboy82 said:

also with Gretzky, what if someone comes a long and breaks his records, will the NHL retire that persons number.

 

I honestly don’t think his number was retired for any one record that will fall, but for being the superstar that brought the NHL into the mainstream.  The first international superstar, as it were. 

 

Can’t take that away from him.  But still doesn’t mean his number should have been retired league-wide. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this