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In 1953, he was assigned to the Jacksonville Braves, the Braves’ Class A team in Florida. Being assigned to Jacksonville meant an even bigger change for Hank. Jacksonville was a previously all-white team in the South Atlantic League, better known as the Sally League. Hank would be one of the first African-Americans to desegregate the league—and the Deep South. 32 S O T HAT ’ S W HAT T HEY S EE IN T HIS G UY Rueben Stohs was a left-handed pitcher for Fargo-Moorhead in the Northern League. Stohs would one day become a renowned sports psychologist, but one of his most vivid sports moments was his first pitch to Hank.

Being assigned to Jacksonville meant an even bigger change for Hank. Jacksonville was a previously all-white team in the South Atlantic League, better known as the Sally League. Hank would be one of the first African-Americans to desegregate the league—and the Deep South. 32 S O T HAT ’ S W HAT T HEY S EE IN T HIS G UY Rueben Stohs was a left-handed pitcher for Fargo-Moorhead in the Northern League. Stohs would one day become a renowned sports psychologist, but one of his most vivid sports moments was his first pitch to Hank.

Some of the Yankees voiced their confidence loudly, calling the Braves and Milwaukee “bush,” a reference to the Braves and their hometown as minor league, or inferior to the big-city New Yorkers. Hank and the rest of the Braves couldn’t let the Yankees get to them. They were determined to win, despite New York’s lineup of intimidating hitters, including Yogi Berra, Hank Bauer, and Mickey Mantle, and corps of outstanding pitchers, such as Whitey Ford and Don Larsen, who had pitched a perfect game against the Dodgers in the Series one year ago.

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Hank Aaron. Home Run Hero by Jessica Morrison


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