Robinson became the first manager of the Washington Nationals after the team relocated from Montreal for the 2005 season. The mark has been bested only three times since Robinson set it. Aaron Judge of the Yankees (52) and Cody Bellinger of the Dodgers (39) both surpassed it in 2017. He was 83 years old.
"With that 1966 season, Robinson became the first - and remains the only - player to win the MVP in both leagues". Those attributes allowed him to finish his playing days with 586 home runs - fourth-most ever at the time and now 10th on the all-time list.
Robinson's legendary run as a player only tells part of his story.
"As the first African-American manager in Major League history, Frank was a proponent of civil rights causes on and off the field, including policies that paved the way for minorities to have increased access to executive and management positions in baseball".
It was with Cleveland, 28 years after Jackie Robinson broke baseball's colour barrier, that Frank Robinson became MLB's first black manager when he walked the lineup card to home plate as a player-manager for the Cleveland Indians.
When he arrived in Baltimore, Robinson and his family struggled to find housing in the city, with many landlords refusing black tenants. Statues of Robinson stand outside the Reds' Great American Ball Park, the Orioles' Oriole Park at Camden Yards, and the Indians' Progressive Field. He would again win a World Series title in 1970. If you don't know much about Frank Robinson, I recommend looking him up. The Baltimore Sun recently reported that Robinson was in the late stages of a long illness.
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However, Robinson was also aware of the challenges he would face as the league's first African-American manager.
An All-Star outfielder in 12 seasons and a first-ballot selection to Cooperstown, Robinson also was a Rookie of the Year and picked up a Gold Glove.
"[His] résumé in our game is without parallel, a trailblazer in every sense, whose impact spanned generations", MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement posted to the league's website. His leadership in the front office and as manager of the Orioles was highlighted by being named the American League Manager of the Year in 1989.
Born in Beaumont, Texas, Robinson was raised in west Oakland where he attended McClymonds High School along with future NBA Hall of Famer Bill Russell. Robinson was awarded "for his extraordinary achievements as a baseball player and manager for setting a lasting example of character and athletics". He was also baseball's first black manager.
What people said about him: "Frank Robinson and I were more than baseball buddies".
It's a road Robinson not only overcame, but conquered en route to producing one of the greatest careers in Major League Baseball history.