We recently asked you to list your choices for the 10 greatest Dodgers of all time, and vote you did, as we received an amazing 12,231 ballots. So many people voted that we have decided to expand the list from the top 10 to the top 20. Each weekday at 11 a.m. PDT, a new person will be listed as we count down all 20.
Remember, any Dodger, Brooklyn or L.A., was eligible, including managers, owners, announcers, etc. Points were assigned based on where you listed the person on the ballot. Your first choice received 12 points, second choice 10, third place eight, all the way down to one point for 10th place.
So without further ado, here is No. 2:
No. 2: Jackie Robinson (2,961 first-place votes, 105,545 points)
You can't do dignity to Jackie Robinson's status as a racial pioneer in a blog post, so I'm not even going to try, except to say that alone makes him worthy of being on this list.
But in all the talk about Robinson's role as the man who broke the color barrier, one thing often gets left out: He was a great baseball player. I can list his stats, but it's better to let others say what a great player he was.
Bill James, in his "Historical Baseball Abstract," lists Robinson as the fourth-greatest second baseman in baseball history.
Former manager Charlie Dressen once said, "Give me five players like Robinson and a pitcher and I'll beat any nine-man team in baseball."
Duke Snider: "He was the greatest competitor I've ever seen. I've seen him beat a team with his bat, his ball, his glove, his feet and, in a game in Chicago one time, with his mouth."
Former Cardinals great Red Schoendienst: "If it wasn't for him, the Dodgers would be in the second division."
Pee Wee Reese: "Thinking about the things that happened, I don't know any other ballplayer who could have done what he did. To be able to hit with everybody yelling at him. He had to block all that out, block out everything but this ball that is coming in at a hundred miles an hour. To do what he did has got to be the most tremendous thing I've ever seen in sports."
Hall of Famer Frank Robinson: “You ever hear people talking about him as an offensive player or defensive player? It’s a shame, really. It’s something that’s been overlooked. He was spectacular and he was sound and he did things that other players couldn’t even think about.”