Hall of Famer, Pioneering Manager Frank Robinson Dies at 83

Hall of Famer, Pioneering Manager Frank Robinson Dies at 83

Hall of Famer, Pioneering Manager Frank Robinson Dies at 83

During his 21-seasons in the MLB, the legendary baseball star made major league baseball history as the first African-American manager when he managed the Cleveland Indians during the last two years of his playing career. A 12-time All-Star selection in the outfield, Robinson also was a Rookie of the Year and won a Gold Glove. He was inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame in 1982.

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 won the American League's Triple Crown in 1966 when he hit.316 with 49 home runs and 122 RBI.

In the six years Robinson spent as an Oriole, the team went to the World Series four times, winning twice in 1966 and 1970.

Robinson starred in the major leagues for two decades, and later became the first black manager in the history of the MLB. Robinson remained with the Indians until 1977, then managed the San Francisco Giants and Orioles. He represented four franchises as a manager, most recently when Baseball returned to Washington, DC with the Nationals in 2005.

Robinson is also a member of the Reds, Orioles, Indians and Nationals' team halls of fame.

"Frank Robinson might have been the best I ever saw at turning his anger into runs".

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That December, Robinson was the centerpiece in what would ultimately be one of the most lopsided trades in baseball history, going to Baltimore for pitchers Milt Pappas and Jack Baldschun and outfielder Dick Simpson. He was also baseball's first black manager.

Robinson attended McClymonds High School in Oakland where he was a basketball teammate of Hall of Famer Bill Russell and a baseball teammate of Vada Pinson, with whom he would play on the Reds, and Curt Flood. 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.

While Robinson was fiery on the field, he was even more so off it as he fought for civil rights for much of his playing career especially once he moved to Baltimore. From there, he played for five teams over the next 20 years, including the Orioles, Los Angeles Dodgers, California Angels and Cleveland Indians before retiring from the game as a player at age 40 following the 1976 season.

The Orioles confirmed Robinson's passing Thursday afternoon.

"I knew there was going to be an terrible lot of pressure, a lot of expectation and a lot of unhappy people because when things went right, fine, but when things went wrong, it was going to be doubly bad because of me being the first black manager", Robinson said. Mazzone capably did his job for years with metal hooks and became good friends with Robinson.

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