Eddie Rosario: MLB should retire Roberto Clemente’s No. 21

Braves outfielder Eddie Rosario rips a RBI single to take a 1-0 lead over the Colorado Rockies during the second inning Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021, at Truist Park in Atlanta. Rosario, a Puerto Rico native, wore No. 21 Wednesday in honor of Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente. (Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@ajc.com)

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

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Braves outfielder Eddie Rosario rips a RBI single to take a 1-0 lead over the Colorado Rockies during the second inning Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021, at Truist Park in Atlanta. Rosario, a Puerto Rico native, wore No. 21 Wednesday in honor of Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente. (Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@ajc.com)

Credit: Curtis Compton / Curtis.Compton@

Braves left fielder Eddie Rosario, a Puerto Rico native, wore No. 21 Wednesday in honor of Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente, a Puerto Rican icon.

Rosario had two RBIs, including a home run. It was the second consecutive year he homered wearing Clemente’s No. 21, following his performance in a Twins’ win over the Indians last September.

“It’s a good number, man,” Rosario said. He explained what Clemente means to Puerto Ricans and the Latino community — and reiterated his hope that the number is one day retired across MLB, like Jackie Robinson’s No. 42.

“It was real important to be able to wear that number,” Rosario said via team interpreter Franco Garcia. “To Puerto Ricans, he set the example we all try to follow on and off the field. It’s a big honor to wear that number. More than anything, I think the battle we Puerto Ricans have taken up is trying to get his number retired across MLB. That’s something we’re fighting for and hopefully we can gain some traction in that argument.

“Roberto Clemente was the idol of Puerto Rico. He is a legend to all Latinos. … Everything that Roberto did back in his day, and in his time, it’s just so impressive. So just an absolute legend and star for all Latinos, and especially Puerto Ricans.”

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