Adam Jones wore No. 42 instead of his usual No. 10 on Wednesday in Baltimore, collecting two hits and driving in a run as the designated hitter during a 3-0 victory over the Rays. It was a rainout makeup game as part of Jackie Robinson Day around the Majors, when all players wore No. 42 in honor of the man who broke Major League Baseball's color barrier in 1947.
"I recognize him every day with how I go out and play the game," Jones said of Robinson. "Every day, to me, is a tribute to Jackie Robinson and Larry Doby and all the innovators for helping myself, countless other African-Americans, Latins, Asians to play this game. I don't just look at it as one day. I look at that [as] how I treat every single day in the Major Leagues."
Now you can own the No. 42 jersey that Jones wore during the game, or any of a wide array depending on your favorite players and clubs. It's time for the annual Jackie Robinson Day Auction at MLB.com, featuring team-signed jerseys, game-used jerseys and a special collector's edition item, as all net proceeds go to the Jackie Robinson Foundation.
The auction includes a special Tommy Bahama Jackie Robinson Shirt with a $500 opening bid. Tommy Bahama and MLB Properties collaborated on this custom silk shirt with hand-painted artwork that wraps around the entire shirt and features a vintage photo of Robinson in a classic Brooklyn uniform. It features the Hall of Famer's signature quote: "A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives." A limited quantity are produced, each one is numbered, and shirt No. 42 -- the one up for bidding -- is signed by Jackie's wife, Rachel, and daughter, Sharon.
The Dodgers No. 42 road jersey might have special meaning to you because it is the same franchise that Jackie himself represented when he took the field on that historic day at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn. One of the players who signed this jersey, outfielder Carl Crawford, said it is important to keep the memory alive -- whether it is wearing 42 on that special day, bidding on a jersey like this to raise funds for the foundation, or just making sure that the youngest generation continues to be educated about the subject.
"It's important, because he opened a lot of doors for us, he went through a lot so we could be in this position," Crawford said. "So each and every day, we have to honor his name. We wear his jersey, and I think it's good for baseball. ... We take a lot of pride -- it's a number that no one else can wear, so for us to be able to wear it for one day, it means a lot."
Want a Mike Trout autograph on a No. 42 Angels home jersey for your wall? His familiar signature is right there on the back with other teammates' autographs, and that had the most bids of all the team-signed 42 jerseys as of noon ET on Friday. On Jackie Robinson Day, Trout hit a towering two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth to send the game against Oakland into extra innings.
Of course, anything with Derek Jeter's autograph on it has extra meaning in his farewell season, and the captain is among many Yankees who signed these pinstripes.
Speaking of Jeter, what would you bid on that ball that Houston starter Scott Feldman hit him with in the shortstop's first at-bat of his final season? It's up for bidding now as well, because in addition to the Jackie Robinson Day Auction, there is also an ongoing Opening Day Auction that is chock-full of significant artifacts like that from openers around the Majors.
The MLB.com Auction was relaunched for this regular season, so this also is a good chance to explore the new touches. Among the enhancements are the ability share your bids on social media; photo enlargement; video highlights for select game-used items; Featured Items and "Hot" Items; Auction of the Week; Ultimate Experiences; and exclusive collectibles.
Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog.