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Tigers to honor contest winners, celebrate Jackie

MLB.com

SAN DIEGO -- Though postponed a day because of poor weather that washed out Tuesday's game as well, the Tigers will celebrate Jackie Robinson Day today by wearing No. 42 on the field. But their activities will begin well before first pitch, including a ceremony to honor the winners of their 18th annual Jackie Robinson Art, Essay and Poetry contest.

The Tigers have held the contest to encourage students to submit an original work of art, essay or poem honoring Robinson and his legacy. This year's winners: Amanda Auten of Britten Deerfield School and Jawan Davis of Denby High School for art; Ryan Chatterjee of Reuther Middle School and Joel Tedone of Riverview Community High School for essays; and Annie Gibbs of Reuther Middle School and Olivia Upham of Oxford High School for poetry.

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SAN DIEGO -- Though postponed a day because of poor weather that washed out Tuesday's game as well, the Tigers will celebrate Jackie Robinson Day today by wearing No. 42 on the field. But their activities will begin well before first pitch, including a ceremony to honor the winners of their 18th annual Jackie Robinson Art, Essay and Poetry contest.

The Tigers have held the contest to encourage students to submit an original work of art, essay or poem honoring Robinson and his legacy. This year's winners: Amanda Auten of Britten Deerfield School and Jawan Davis of Denby High School for art; Ryan Chatterjee of Reuther Middle School and Joel Tedone of Riverview Community High School for essays; and Annie Gibbs of Reuther Middle School and Olivia Upham of Oxford High School for poetry.

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The winners will join Jackie Robinson Foundation Alumni and Scholars from the University of Michigan for a pregame ceremony ahead of the 7:08 p.m. ET game against the Cleveland Indians. Tigers outfielders Rajai Davis, Torii Hunter and Austin Jackson will join them.

"Jackie Robinson means so much to this game," Hunter said. "Not just the game, but to people all over the country. He broke the color barrier, and he stayed strong through some adverse times. Had he been weak and quit and just said forget about it, where would we be -- not just in the game, but as a people?

"I think with him being strong and Americans getting a chance to know him and see his game and see the way he played the game, he opened a lot of eyes and changed a lot of mindsets. What he did, withstanding all that adversity, I think that's strength."

In addition, the Tigers will honor the winner of the Jackie Robinson Most Valuable Business Partner Award, established by Major League Baseball in 1998 to help cultivate partnerships with minority- and women-owned businesses. Brandon Bordeaux, chairman and COO of Caravan Facilities Management, will be presented with this year's award.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason.

Detroit Tigers