Robinson's career spanned two decades, earning him a Rookie of the Year award for his 1956 season with the Cincinnati Reds and 14 All-Star Game nominations. Robinson hit a home run that cleared the left-field bleachers, the ball flying high over spectators, and landing in the parking lot beyond. Robinson was a first-ballot Hall of Famer, being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982.
Word emerged today that legendary former ballplayer and manager Frank Robinson has passed away at 83 years of age. He became the first manager of the Washington Nationals after the franchise moved from Montreal for the 2005 season.
Because he helped pave the way for future generations of black players and managers, Robinson will always be among the most important figures in MLB's history.
Being the sport's first black manager "was nothing compared to what Jackie did or what he went through, but it was important because I was the first and that meant the door's open", Robinson told OTL in 2016.
"It was everything and more than I thought it would be". "It was just a move at the time, at that moment, I just felt like I had to do it for the good of the ballclub, to try to win that ballgame". The Reds were a part of the Pioneer League from 1939-55 and played their home games at the now demolished John Affleck Park. "I wouldn't let that pitcher get me out". "He was one of the greatest players in the history of our game, but that was just the beginning of a multifaceted baseball career", Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said Thursday in a statement.
Robinson had coached for the Orioles and worked in their front office when he became their manager in 1988 after the team opened at 0-6. His MLB-best marks of 49 home runs, 122 RBIs, .316 batting average and 122 runs scored helped carry the Orioles to their first World Series title. He and the Orioles won three more AL pennants and another World Series over the next five seasons.
"I remember the first game I ever managed [for Baltimore] in 1968".
Robinson was born in Oakland, California, and experienced racism during his time in the minor leagues that "fueled both his anger and his will to win", according to ESPN. That served him well in Baltimore where, in addition to being a star right fielder, he was the judge for the team's Kangaroo Court, assessing playful fines for missing signs, uniform mishaps and other things he deemed as infractions.
"It's not LeCroy's fault", Robinson said.
"It was either thumbs up or thumbs down", he recalled.
Survivors include his wife, Barbara, and daughter Nichelle.