Known as much for his leadership, toughness and raging competitive fire as his sheer greatness as a player, Robinson was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982.
In memory of Orioles Legend and National Baseball Hall of Famer FRANK ROBINSON, the Orioles hosted a celebration of life at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on Saturday, April 6, prior to the game against the New York Yankees. The program, "A Celebration of Frank," included video tribute and a collection of notable guest speakers who honored the memory of one of the greatest players in Orioles history.
Brooks Robinson, Boog Powell, Jim Palmer and National Baseball Hall of Fame president Jeff Idelson were among those who spoke during the ceremonies. Robinson's widow Barbara, his daughter Nichelle, Cal Ripken Jr., Eddie Murray, general manager Mike Elias, executive vice president John Angelos and ownership representative Louis Angelos attended as well. Club broadcaster Gary Thorne emceed the event.
In remembering Robinson, Brooks Robinson, Palmer and Powell all told stories from the era of success they experienced together in Baltimore. With Robinson as the centerpiece of their offense, the Orioles reached four World Series between 1966-1971, winning two championships. Frank Robinson remains one of two players in MLB history to win an MVP and World Series MVP award; Brooks is the other.
"Frank Robinson was not only one of the greatest players in Orioles history, but was also one of the premier players in the history of baseball. Fans will forever remember Frank for his 1966 season in which he won the Triple Crown and was named MVP during a year that brought Baltimore its first World Series championship. His World Series MVP performance capped off one of the greatest individual seasons in baseball history. An Orioles Legend and a Baseball Hall of Famer, Frank brought us so many wonderful memories, including two championships, during his time in Baltimore.
"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. 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. To this day, Frank remains the only person in Orioles history to serve as a player, coach, manager, and front office executive.
"Frank's contributions to the Orioles and his work as an ambassador for Major League Baseball will never be forgotten. This is a difficult day for our entire organization and for our many fans. We extend our condolences to his wife, Barbara, his daughter, Nichelle, his entire family, and his many friends across our game."
In honor of Robinson's fruitful life in baseball, here is a chronological look at the top 10 moments in the slugger's legendary career, starting at the beginning.
Robinson was the definition of greatness, leadership and toughness. Well into his 70s and 80s, he carried himself with the confidence and unmistakable gait of a great athlete.