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The Montreal Royals were a professional minor league franchise that played from 1897 to 1917, and from 1928 to 1960. For that second period, the Royals were a Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers Affiliate. And it was the Royals' relationship with the Dodgers that ensured the team would be widely remembered. In 1946, Branch Rickey, President and GM of the Brooklyn Dodgers, signed Jackie Robinson to a minor league contract. This made Robinson the first black man to be part of a MLB-affiliated roster, breaking the unofficial, but thoroughly enforced, colour barrier. He was a sensation in Montreal from the start, winning the fans' hearts with a hot bat and daring base stealing. In his one season with the Royals Robinson hit .349 with 113 runs and a whopping 40 stolen bases. That year Robinson would guide the Royals to 100 wins and a 1st-place IL finish, and to a Junior World Series victory against the Kansas City Blues of the American Association.
The SPORT Gallery is dedicated to shedding light on the widespread yet under-appreciated art of sports photography.
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