Branch Rickey

  • American athlete
  • Born December 20, 1881
  • Died December 9, 1965

Wesley Branch Rickey (December 20, 1881 – December 9, 1965) was an American baseball player and sports executive. He was perhaps best known for breaking Major League Baseball's color barriers by signing black player Jackie Robinson, as well as for creating the framework for the modern minor league farm system, for encouraging the Major Leagues to add new teams through his involvement in the proposed Continental League, and for introducing the batting helmet. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1967, two years after his death.

Luck is the residue of design.

All I had was natural ability.

Problems are the price you pay for progress.

How to use your leisure time is the biggest problem of a ballplayer.

I don't care if I was a ditch-digger at a dollar a day, I'd want to do my job better than the fellow next to me. I'd want to be the best at whatever I do.

Only in baseball can a team player be a pure individualist first and a team player second, within the rules and spirit of the game.

Trade a player a year too early rather than a year too late.

The greatest untapped reservoir of raw material in the history of our game is the black race.

I find fault with my children because I like them and I want them to go places - uprightness and strength and courage and civil respect and anything that affects the probabilities of failure on the part of those that are closest to me, that concerns me - I find fault.

The man with the ball is responsible for what happens to the ball.

A full mind is an empty bat.

Leisure is the handmaiden of the devil.

Baseball people, and that includes myself, are slow to change and accept new ideas. I remember that it took years to persuade them to put numbers on uniforms.

Cobb lived off the field as though he wished to live forever. He lived on the field as though it was his last day.

Baseball is a game of inches.

Never surrender opportunity for security.

It is not the honor that you take with you, but the heritage you leave behind.

If things don't come easy, there is no premium on effort. There should be joy in the chase, zest in the pursuit.

Ethnic prejudice has no place in sports, and baseball must recognize that truth if it is to maintain stature as a national game.

A great ballplayer is a player who will take a chance.

Thou shalt not steal. I mean defensively. On offense, indeed thou shall steal and thou must.

Thinking about the devil is worse than seeing the devil.