Frank Robinson, MLB Hall of Famer and Pioneering Manager, Dead at 83

Elena Summers
February 8, 2019

Frank Robinson, major-league baseball's first African-American manager, has passed away, the Cleveland Indians confirmed to FOX 8 News on Thursday. He earned the National League's Rookie of the Year honors in following that season, hitting.290 with 38 homers and 83 RBI in his debut season.

Robinson's Hall of Fame career is full of incredible accomplishments.

In his first season in Baltimore, Robinson showed he still had plenty left in his 30-year-old body as he was named the AL MVP following a 1966 campaign in which he won baseball's Triple Crown.

Robinson was a National League MVP, breaking records and barriers, and his trade from the Reds is regarded as one of the worst trades in history.

He would win two World Series titles in his six years with the Orioles. Our organization and the City of Cleveland are proud to have played a role in Frank's significant impact on the game when he became the first African-American manager in baseball history on April 8, 1975. Robinson remained with the Indians until 1977, then managed the San Francisco Giants and Orioles. He became the first manager of the Washington Nationals after the franchise moved from Montreal for the 2005 season.

Robinson hit 586 home runs - he was fourth on the career list behind only Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth and Willie Mays when he retired and now ranks 10th. "The entire Indians organization extends its thoughts and prayers to the Robinson family".

Originally, Robinson did not have himself in the lineup that afternoon at Municipal Stadium, but his boss, Tribe general manager Phil Seghi, talked him into it by saying "Frank, this is your day".

Frank Robinson was one of the greatest players and managers of all time. The only reason that I'm the first black manager is because I was born black. He hit.323 with 37 home runs and 124 RBIs and led the majors in slugging (.611), OPS (1.015) and intentional walks (23) for a 93-61 Reds club that lost in the World Series to the New York Yankees.

ESPN's Tim Kurkjian writes that "Robinson is one of the most underrated superstar players ever to play the game".

Robinson is considered a trailblazer in the game of baseball.

"Frank took us from being a good team in 1965 to being a great team in 1966", Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer told the Baltimore Sun.

Robinson's career started with the Cincinnati Reds in 1956 as he won the Rookie of the Year Award in the National League that year.

"We are deeply saddened by this loss of our friend, colleague and legend, who worked in our game for more than 60 years", Manfred said.

He was the NL Most Valuable Player in 1961, the same year the Reds won the league pennant.

Later, Robinson spent several years working as an executive for Major League Baseball.

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