Hall of Famer Frank Robinson led the Orioles to their first World Series title in 1966, was the first African-American manager in both the American and National Leagues and managed the Orioles for parts of four seasons. Here’s a timeline of his career.


MLB debut

Frank Robinson made his MLB debut as a player with the Cincinnati Reds. He hit his first major league home run against the Chicago Cubs on April 28.



Robinson was named Most Valuable Player for the first time in his career while playing for the Cincinnati Reds, a National League team.


Career bests

With the Cincinnati Reds, Robinson posted career bests with 136 RBI, a .342 batting average and 134 runs scored.

Frank Robinson's contract
In March 1966, Frank Robinson beams as he holds contract he signed after arriving at Baltimore Orioles spring training camp. Robinson was acquired from Cincinnati Reds in a winter trade. File photo


Traded to O’s

On Dec. 9, 1965, the Reds traded him to the Baltimore Orioles for pitcher Milt Pappas and two others. It is widely considered the best trade the Orioles ever made.

Memorial Stadium home run
Frank Robinson is presented with the ball he hit out of Memorial Stadium on May 8, 1966 by Michael Sparaco, age 15, center, and Bill Wheatley, 14, who retrieved the ball from under an auto in the parking lot. Baltimore Sun File Photo


Historic year

Robinson won his first World Series ring with Baltimore. He was named the American League's Most Valuable Player with the Orioles and World Series MVP — making him the first MLB player to win Most Valuable Player in both leagues. He hit for the Triple Crown, leading the American League with a .316 batting average, 49 home runs and 122 RBI.


Second World Series win

Robinson won his second World Series ring with Baltimore. He hit a grand slam in two consecutive plate appearances against the Washington Senators on Aug. 20.


500 HR club

Robinson was named Most Valuable Player of the All-Star game. On Sept. 13, he joined the 500 home run club with two home runs against the Detroit Tigers. In December, he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher Doyle Alexander and three others.



Robinson played for the California Angels.


MLB’s first black manager

Robinson was traded to the Cleveland Indians in September. The Indians named him the first black manager in Major League Baseball.


Player retirement

Robinson retired as a player with 586 career home runs and a .294 batting average.



Robinson lasted into 1977 as the Indians’ manager before he was fired, finishing his pioneering stint with a 186-189 record.


Managing Giants

Robinson began managing the San Francisco Giants, which he did until 1984.

Frank Robinson
National Baseball Hall of Famer Frank Robinson arrives for an induction ceremony at the Clark Sports Center on Sunday, July 26, 2015, in Cooperstown, N.Y. Mike Groll / Associated Press


Hall of Fame

He was inducted to the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame on the first ballot.


O’s manager

Robinson became manager of an Orioles team that went 54-107.


Why Not?

In a remarkable turnaround, the Orioles won 87 games and Robinson was named AL Manager of the Year.



The Orioles had gone back to losing in 1990, and Robinson was reassigned 37 games into the 1991 season.


Expos and move

In his final stint as a manager, Robinson took over the Montreal Expos in 2002 and guided the team through its transition to Washington. He stepped down after the 2006 season, during which he turned 71.