Newcombe pitched for the Newark Eagles of the Negro leagues and was picked to start a game against an all-white team in 1945. Had hadn't allowed any hits but had to leave the game in the third inning because of a hurt elbow. He cried in the dugout thinking he had missed his opportunity to impress scouts. Branch Rickey offered him a contract with a $1000 signing bonus and Newcombe ended up playing in Nashua, NH, then Montreal, before he made his debut with the Dodgers in 1949 becoming the first successful Black starter. He also had a bat--.271 with a .705 OPS to go along with 149 wins and 90 losses in his 10-year career that ended with the Reds and the Indians. He was Rookie of the Year and later earned the first Cy Young award and also MVP in 1956. Unfortunately, he developed a problem with alcohol, which undoubtedly shortened his career; however, he later headed the Dodgers' drug-and-alcohol abuse program.