Baseball Hall of Fame Remembers One of the Greats: Frank Robinson
“Every time I put on this uniform, I think of Jackie Robinson."
-- Frank Robinson, on April 8, 1975, when he became the first African-American manager in MLB history
Frank Robinson’s Hall of Fame plaque (elected, 1982)
Cincinnati, N.L., Baltimore, A.L.,
Los Angeles, N.L., California, A.L.,
Cleveland, A.L., 1956-76
First to be chosen Most Valuable Player in both leagues – N.L. in 1961 and A.L. in 1966. Set records by hitting homers in 32 different parks and with pair of grand-slammers successive innings in 1970. Fourth in homers (586), fifth in extra bases on long hits (2,430), sixth in total bases (5,373), on retiring. Led N.L. in slugging pct. in 1960-61-62 and A.L. in batting, homers, runs batted in, total bases and slugging pct. in 1966.
Frank Robinson Bio:
Born: Aug. 31, 1935, in Beaumont, Texas
Died: Feb. 7, 2019 in Bel Air, Calif.
Height: 6-foot-1 Weight: 183
Threw and batted right
A major league player, manager, coach, executive and broadcaster, Frank Robinson did it all. A two-time Most Valuable Player, once in each league, Robinson was an aggressive outfielder and hard-charging baserunner. “Frank was a great player,” Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax said. “He had great tools, and he had great desire. He beat you any way he could.” The 1966 American League Triple Crown winner, Robinson concluded his career with 586 home runs and just 57 hits shy of 3,000. His intelligence and leadership helped him become the major leagues’ first African-American manager; he was named player-manager of the Cleveland Indians in 1975.
Remembering Frank Robinson
“Frank will be forever remembered for his enormous impact on our game as an extraordinary player, a gifted manager, and a deeply committed member of the Board of Directors of the Hall of Fame. He brought great character, integrity, and sportsmanship to each of these roles. We are truly saddened by this loss and share our deepest sympathy with his family.” – Jane Forbes Clark, Chairman, Baseball Hall of Fame
“Frank Robinson was an intense competitor who built his prolific 21-year career, and earned a place in American history, on the strength of guts, determination and a staunch constitution. He's the only player in history to win MVPs in both leagues and his 586 lifetime home runs ranked fourth most when he retired, behind Aaron, Ruth and Mays. He elevated the game by becoming Baseball's first black manager in 1975, earning his rightful place in Cooperstown in 1982.” – Jeff Idelson, President, Baseball Hall of Fame
“Frank Robinson was not only a great player, but he was a great manager, as well. Frank and Sparky Anderson are the two best managers I had, and I consider it a tremendous honor to have played for the first African-American manager. Frank and I became close friends when I played for him. That lasting friendship extended all the way to today, and we stayed in close contact through his illness. I’m extremely saddened with his passing, and my thoughts are with his wife, Barbara, and his daughter Nichelle at this time.”
– Hall of Famer and Hall of Fame Vice Chairman Joe Morgan
On the web: Visit baseballhall.org/hall-of-famers/robinson-frank to view Frank Robinson’s Hall of Fame plaque and a video tribute.