Our national pastime is played on a diamond. But for me last Wednesday night it was played in a circle — a full circle. I was a guest of Jackie Robinson’s widow Rachel at Citifield, the new home of the New York Mets.

baseball game at Waban Park 1910

It is a game played by old men and young boys, by professionals and amateurs alike, at the dawn of spring and at the coming of winter. On the Vineyard, the game of baseball has been played by farmers, sailors, fishermen and businessmen, in Menemsha meadows and makeshift diamonds at Waban Park in Oak Bluffs, Toomey Field in Chilmark and Veterans Park in Tisbury.


Sharon Robinson

Sharon Robinson, author of Stealing Home, a memoir of her family life with baseball dad Jackie Robinson, held court last Friday at what’s becoming the Island’s clubhouse, The Oyster Bar & Grill. From weddings to fundraisers, the trendy eatery at the top of Circuit avenue in Oak Bluffs, with high wooden booths and brown satin curtains that put you in mind of Renoir and absinthe-sippers, has hosted a string of special events. This past Friday it was the scene of Ms. Robinson’s talk, the third in a NAACP series of summer luncheons.


This is the unusual story of the unlikely relationship between the families of Vineyard photographer Peter Simon, his rock ’n’ roll star sister, Carly, and baseball pioneer Jackie Robinson.
The tale begins in 1955, when the fleet-footed Mr. Robinson — the first African-American Major League baseball player in history — was leading the Brooklyn Dodgers to their first World Series title.