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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Red Sox finally integrate Green into lineup
By Larry Schwartz
Special to ESPN.com
July 21, 1959
Twelve years after Jackie Robinson's debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers, the Boston Red Sox become the last major-league team to integrate. Pumpsie Green enters Boston's 2-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox as a pinch-runner in the eighth inning and stays in at shortstop.
It's taken Green 7+ years to reach the majors, 4+ years in the Red Sox organization. Some believed Green should have made the club out of spring training, but the Red Sox, who were accused of discrimination, tell him to learn to play second base in the minors. Today, his dream finally comes true as he's called up from Minneapolis.
"When I was told the Red Sox wanted me to report to Chicago, I suddenly became weak," Green says. "I had to sit down quick. I just couldn't believe the news. My legs felt as if they'd collapsed . . . I packed in a hurry . . . and was landing in Chicago two hours after I received the phone call."
Green will play five seasons, four with Boston, and have a lifetime average of .246.
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