Frank Robinson was one of the most prominent figures in the history of Major League Baseball, being the first African-American manager.
Robinson, 83, died Thursday in Los Angeles after a long battle with bone cancer.
After managing the Cleveland Indians from 1975 to 1977, Robinson became the National League’s first African-American manager in 1981 when he was hired by the San Francisco Giants. By 1982, the Giants were back in playoff contention.
Robinson also was a prolific hitter during his time as a player. In 21 years in the big leagues, the Hall of Famer launched 586 home runs and ranks 10th all-time in that category. He ranked fourth in homers when he retired.
Robinson is considered a trailblazer in the game of baseball. The legend managed four seasons with the Giants and 16 seasons overall, winning 1,065 games. Among being both a player and a manager, Robinson worked in the Baltimore Orioles front office and also as vice president of on-field operations for MLB.
In 1956, Robinson won Rookie of the Year in Cincinnati and later won his first MVP award in 1961. That’s not all the awards he won, though. In 1966 he won Major League Player of the Year, the American League Triple Crown and the AL Babe Ruth Award, as well as being named both the AL and World Series MVP. In 1989 he was voted AL Manager of the Year.
Robinson paved the way for many in the big leagues and is honored with statues dedicated to him outside Camden Yards in Baltimore and Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati.
Thumbnail photo via John Hefti/USA TODAY Sports Images
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