Don Newcombe

Baseball great Don Newcombe has died after a lengthy illness, the Los Angeles Dodgers announced Tuesday. He was 92.

"Don Newcombe's presence and life established him as a role model for major leaguers across the country," Dodgers president Stan Kasten said in a statement. "He was a constant presence at Dodger Stadium and players always gravitated toward him for his endless advice and friendship. The Dodgers meant everything to him and we are all fortunate he was a part of our lives."

Newcombe was one of the first African-American pitchers in MLB. He joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1949. He won Rookie of the Year and helped the team win the NL pennant.

In Newcombe's debut season, he and Dodgers teammates Jackie Robinson and Roy Campanella became three of the first four African-Americans (along with Cleveland outfielder Larry Doby) to appear in an All-Star Game.

Newcombe finished his 10-year MLB career as a four-time All-Star with a 149-90 record and 3.56 ERA.

His best season on the mound came in 1956, when he led the league with 27 wins and won the Cy Young and MVP awards and led the Dodgers to another NL pennant. 

The New Jersey native began his professional career in the Negro Leagues in 1944.

Information from Espn.com contributed to this report.

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