Robinson was known for his sheer power at the plate. He went on to make 14 All-Star game appearances, and now ranks 10th on the all-time home run list with 586. Which is why it was only fitting that Robinson, baseball's first African-American manager, was an integral part of bringing baseball back to the nation's capital. Robinson was awarded "for his extraordinary achievements as a baseball player and manager for setting a lasting example of character and athletics".
A fearsome hitter, Robinson ranks 10th on the career home run list with 586.
"Frank Robinson and I were more than baseball buddies", Hank Aaron tweeted.
Then we saw Robinson in tears at a post-game press conference because he felt he embarrassed third-string catcher Matt LeCroy, pressed into action due to injuries, by pulling him off the field in the top of the seventh inning against the Houston Astros at RFK Stadium, after seven stolen bases by the Astros and two LeCroy throwing errors. Yes, and I've been hard on them for a reason, and that was to try to get them to be the best they could possibly be. "He actually curled his upper body and head over the plate and dared pitchers to hit him". During his career he was hit 198 times.
"I wasn't trying to embarrass him in any way", Robinson said, clearly upset. "It made me more determined". That includes becoming MLB's first black manager in 1974.
Robinson later spent several years working as an executive for Major League Baseball and for a time oversaw the annual Civil Rights Game. After his parents split up, his mother moved with her children to California's Bay Area.
"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.
Frank Robinson has lost his battle with bone cancer and passed away at the age of 83 on Thursday. It's a road Robinson not only overcame, but conquered en route to producing one of the greatest careers in Major League Baseball history.
"Frank Robinson's resume in our game is without parallel, a trailblazer in every sense, whose impact spanned generations", Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement.
Robinson is also a member of the Reds, Orioles, Indians and Nationals' team halls of fame.
Robinson is survived by his wife, Barbara Ann, and two children, Frank Kevin and Nichelle.