Branch Rickey’s Top Quotes

Wesley Branch was a baseball player and sports executive from the United States who was born on December 20, 1881. When he signed Jackie Robinson, a black player, he helped crack Major League Baseball’s color barrier.

Branch Rickey also developed the current minor league farm system structure and persuaded the Major Leagues to add new teams through his planned Continental League tie-in. He then went on to talk about the batting helmet.

In addition, from 1905 to 1907, he played for the St. Louis Browns and the New York Highlanders in Major League Baseball. In 2014, the Cardinals inducted him into the team’s Hall of Fame.

He has coached football at Ohio Wesleyan University and Allegheny College after playing for the professional Shelby Blues. His many accomplishments and strong faith in Christianity have earned him the nickname “the Mahatma.”

“A great ballplayer is a player who will take a chance.”― Branch

“Thinking about the devil is worse than seeing the devil.”― Branch

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


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“Problems are the price you pay for progress.”― Branch Rickey

“Luck is the residue of design.”― Branch Rickey

Branch Rickey St Louis
Source: Britannica

“If things don’t come easy, there is no premium on effort. There should be joy in the chase, zest in the pursuit.”― Branch Rickey

“Thou shalt not steal. I mean defensively. On offense, indeed thou shall steal and thou must.”― Branch Rickey

“A full mind is an empty bat.”― Branch Rickey

“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.”― Branch Rickey


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

“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.”― Branch Rickey

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

“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.”― Branch Rickey

Branch Rickey Jackie Robinson
Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal

“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.”― Branch Rickey

“How to use your leisure time is the biggest problem of a ballplayer.”― Branch Rickey

“Leisure is the handmaiden of the devil.”― Branch Rickey


“The man with the ball is responsible for what happens to the ball.”― Branch Rickey

“All I had was natural ability.”― Branch Rickey

“The greatest untapped reservoir of raw material in the history of our game is the black race.”― Branch Rickey