From the Warp and the Woof, We Rise: Reflecting on a lifelong relationship with something more than a game. (Jonathan Coleman, 3/21/24, Hedgehog Review)

And yet when I return to 1964, I return to Dick Allen, who became the National League’s Rookie of the Year for Philadelphia and yet was treated horribly by Phillies fans (and by one white teammate in particular, Frank Thomas, who provoked a fight with Allen, and whose trade from the team both the press and the fans blamed and castigated Allen for). He became the target of things thrown at him: fruit, ice, garbage, batteries. He faced racist taunts and boos so numerous and unrelenting that he became the first player in baseball to wear his batting helmet out in the field. At one point, he silently traced the word “BOO” in the dirt around his area of third base. It must never be forgotten that the Phillies were the last team in baseball to integrate.

Allen, who grew up in tiny Wampum, Pennsylvania, fascinated me. I read and heard he had been given a hard time in the fall of 1963 when he began in Little Rock. Once his rookie season started in Philadelphia, he said little—other than making it clear he did not want to be called “Richie,” which he considered patronizing. His given name was Richard, he pointed out, and he wanted to be viewed and treated like a man, not a little boy. About this he was not quiet, taking a public stand in what was becoming King’s America, one that rankled many and impressed itself on me.