Trailblazing Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Frank Robinson Dies at 83

Crowding the plate, fearsome and fearless, Frank Robinson hammered his way into the Hall of Fame.

His legacy, however, was cemented that day in 1975 when he simply stood in the dugout at old Cleveland Stadium — the first black manager in Major League Baseball.

Robinson, the only player to earn the MVP award in both leagues and a Triple Crown winner, died Thursday at 83. He had been in failing health and in hospice care at his home in the Bel Air section of Los Angeles. MLB said he was with family and friends at the time.

“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 hit 586 home runs — he was fourth on the career list behind only Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth and Willie Mays when he retired and now ranks 10th. An MVP with Cincinnati and Baltimore, he led the Orioles to their first World Series championship in 1966.

“Frank Robinson and I were more than baseball buddies. We were friends. Frank was a hard-nosed baseball player who did things on the field that people said could never be done,” Aaron posted on Twitter.

“Baseball will miss a tremendous human being,” he said.

An All-Star outfielder in 12 seasons and a first-ballot selection to Cooperstown, Robinson also was a Rookie of the Year, a Gold Glove outfielder and a bruising runner.

But his place in the sport’s history extended far beyond the batter’s box and basepaths.

Robinson fulfilled his quest to become the first African-American manager in the big leagues when he was hired by the Cleveland Indians. His impact was immediate and memorable.

The Indians opened at home that year and Robinson, still active, batted himself second as the designated hitter. In the first inning, he homered off Doc Medich and the crowd went crazy, cheering the whole April afternoon as Cleveland beat the Yankees.

The Reds, Orioles and Indians have retired his No. 20 and honored him with statues at their stadiums.

Robinson later managed San Francisco, Baltimore and Montreal. He became the first manager of the Washington Nationals after the franchise moved from Montreal for the 2005 season — the Nationals put him in their Ring of Honor.

More than half the major league teams have had black managers since his debut with Cleveland.

Robinson later spent several years working as an executive for MLB and for a time oversaw the annual Civil Rights Game. He advocated for more minorities throughout baseball and worked with former Commissioner Bud Selig to develop the Selig Rule, directing teams to interview at least one minority candidate before hiring a new manager.

For all he did on and off the field, Robinson was presented the Presidential Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush in 2005.

Hall of Fame manager Joe Torre played against and worked with Robinson for years.

“He was a tough nut,” Torre recalled at the owners’ meetings in Orlando, Florida. “He never lost that feistiness, which puts a smile on your face … He was always that guy that commanded a lot of respect and he had a presence about him.”

Born Aug. 21, 1935, in Beaumont, Texas, Robinson attended McClymonds High School in Oakland, California, and was a basketball teammate of future NBA great Bill Russell. But it was on the diamond, rather than court, where fame awaited Robinson.

Former Orioles pitcher Jim Palmer, who also gained first-ballot entry into the Hall, once called Robinson, “the best player I ever saw.”

Starting out in an era when Mays, Aaron, Mickey Mantle and Ted Williams were the big hitters, Robinson more than held his own over 21 seasons — if anything, many who watched Robinson felt he never got his full due as an all-time great. He finished with 1,812 RBIs and hit .294 — he played in the World Series five times, and homered in each of them.

Robinson was the only player to hit a ball completely out of old Memorial Stadium in Baltimore and once connected for grand slams in consecutive innings of a game. But he didn’t just slug away, as evidenced by a .389 on-base average boosted by 1,420 walks against 1,532 strikeouts. Extremely alert on the bases, he had 204 steals.

Robinson played the game with grace, yet was known as fierce competitor who combined hard work with natural talent. He planted himself near the plate, yielding to no pitcher, and didn’t seem to care about being brushed back or getting hit by a pitch 198 times.

“Pitchers did me a favor when they knocked me down,” Robinson said. “It made me more determined. I wouldn’t let that pitcher get me out.”

And opposing pitchers noticed.

“Frank Robinson might have been the best I ever saw at turning his anger into runs. He challenged you physically as soon as he stepped into the batter’s box, with half his body hanging over the plate,” Hall ace Bob Gibson once wrote.

“As a rule, I’m reluctant to express admiration for hitters, but I make an exception for Frank Robinson,” Gibson wrote.

Robinson carried a similar philosophy as a baserunner, unapologetically sliding spikes high whenever necessary.

“The baselines belong to the runner, and whenever I was running the bases, I always slid hard,” Robinson declared.

Robinson broke in with a bang as a 20-year-old big leaguer. He tied the first-year record with 38 home runs for Cincinnati in 1956, scored a league-high 122 times and was voted NL Rookie of the Year.

Robinson was the 1961 NL MVP after batting .323 with 37 homers and 124 RBIs for the pennant-winning Reds, and reached career highs in runs (134) and RBIs (136) in 1962.

All-time hits leader Pete Rose joined the Reds the next year.

“He had a huge influence on me when I first came up in ’63,” Rose told The Associated Press by phone. “Frank was a really aggressive, hard-nosed player, and it rubbed off on everybody. Frank was the one who took me under his wings, so to speak. … Frank consistently talked to me about playing the game the right way,” he said.

Robinson was an All-Star, too, in 1965, but Reds owner Bill DeWitt decided Robinson was an old-ish 30 and time to make a move.

That December, Robinson was the centerpiece in what would ultimately be one of the most lopsided trades in baseball history, going to Baltimore for pitchers Milt Pappas and Jack Baldschun and outfielder Dick Simpson.

Robinson became an instant hit with the Orioles in 1966 as the unanimous AL MVP and a Triple Crown winner.

On May 8, he became the only player ever to hit a home run completely out of Baltimore’s home park, Memorial Stadium. The drive came against Cleveland ace Luis Tiant and the spot where the ball sailed over the left-field wall was marked by a flag that read “HERE” that remained in place until the Orioles left for Camden Yards in 1991.

Robinson batted .316 with 49 home runs and 122 RBIs during his first season in Birdland. He then homered in the first inning of the 1966 World Series opener at Dodger Stadium and capped off the four-game sweep of Los Angeles with another homer off Don Drysdale in a 1-0 win in Game 4.

Robinson hit two home runs against Rose and the Reds in teaming with future Hall of Fame third baseman Brooks Robinson to win another crown for the Orioles in 1970.

All told, Robinson was an All-Star in five of his six seasons with Baltimore, reaching the World Series four times and batting .300 with 179 home runs. The cap on his Cooperstown plaque carries on O’s logo.

Pappas went 30-29 over two-plus seasons with the Reds, Baldschun won one game in 51 appearances over two years with Cincinnati and Simpson hit five home runs as a part-time outfielder for the Reds during two mediocre seasons.

Robinson was traded to the Dodgers before the 1972 season. He played for the California Angels in 1973 and was dealt to Cleveland late in the 1974 season.

His managerial debut came 28 years after Jackie Robinson broke the MLB color barrier as a player.

“Every time I put on this uniform, I think of Jackie Robinson,” Frank Robinson said as he began his new role.

Robinson had coached for the Orioles and worked in their front office when he became their manager in 1988 after the team opened at 0-6. Things didn’t get much better right away as Baltimore went on to lose its first 21 games and finished 54-107. The next season, the O’s went 87-75 and Robinson was voted AL Manager of the Year.

Tough and demanding, he went 1,065-1,176 overall as a big league manager.

A no-nonsense guy, Robinson also had a sharp wit. That served him well in Baltimore where, in addition to being a star right fielder, he was the judge for the team’s Kangaroo Court, assessing playful fines for missing signs, uniform mishaps and other things he deemed as infractions.

At the time, the Orioles had a batboy named Jay Mazzone, whose hands were amputated when he was 2 after a burning accident. Mazzone capably did his job for years with metal hooks and became good friends with Robinson.

Some players, though, initially weren’t sure how to treat the teen.

“Frank Robinson broke the ice,” Mazzone said. “He was running his Kangaroo Court and calling a vote among the players, whether to fine somebody or not.”

“It was either thumbs up or thumbs down,” he recalled. “After the vote, he said, ‘Jay, you’re fined for not voting.’ Everybody laughed. After that, I was treated just like everybody else.”

Survivors include his wife, Barbara, and daughter Nichelle.

There was no immediate word on funeral arrangements.

___

AP Sports Writer Joe Kay and AP Baseball Writer Ronald Blum contributed to this report.

Sports – TIME

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Frank Robinson, MLB Hall Of Famer And Civil Rights Activist, Dead At 83

Civil Rights activist, and Major League Baseball Hall of Famer, the iconic Frank Robinson passed away at 83 on Thursday.

According to MASN in Baltimore Robinson transitioned after battling bone cancer.

Post-Jackie Robinson, the African-American baseball experience can’t be told without Frank Robinson’s accomplishments.

Read full article at The Shadow League…

The post Frank Robinson, MLB Hall Of Famer And Civil Rights Activist, Dead At 83 appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Missy Elliott 1st Female Rapper Inducted Into Songwriter’s Hall Of Fame

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Source: Arnold Wells / WENN

Missy Elliott has long been viewed as one of music’s best talents across the board, and she is getting more recognition for that solid fact. She becomes the first female rapper to be inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame, joining some other big and familiar names as well.

New York Daily News reports:

The famed rapper is one of the new inductees to the Songwriters Hall of Fame, making her the first female hip hop artist to receive the honor.

“I want to CONGRATULATE all the AMAZING songwriters who have been inducted into the 2019 ‘Song Writers Hall of Fame,” Elliott tweeted Saturday morning. “also those who were nominated because their body of work is AMAZING… I AM SO HUMBLY GRATEFUL to now be inducted also.”

Elliott, 47, was one of six new inductees. She’s joined in this year’s class by John Prine, Yusuf Islam (Cat Stevens), Dallas Austin, Jack Tempchin and Tom T. Hall.

Among Elliott’s achievements, she is the proud owner of four Grammy Awards along with other nods.

In 2017, Jay-Z became the first rapper inducted into the hall, with Jermaine Dupri coming after in 2018.

Photo: WENN

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Mike Birbiglia and Michael C. Hall Star in Two Very Different Theatrical Monologues

Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast

Mike Birbiglia’s ‘The New One on Broadway’

Here is a prediction: No matter how bad your mood, no matter how many zombiefied Midtown Manhattan pedestrians have obstructed your walk to the Cort Theatre on 48th Street, no matter how terrible that day’s news has made you feel, no matter how terrible everything seems, Mike Birbiglia will make you laugh. A lot. Such a lot.

His 90-minute stand-up show, The New One, directed on a grand stage but also intimately by Seth Barrish, is centered around having children. But really it is also a thoroughly entertaining journey through the highways and byways of Birbiglia’s mind, and a lovely, generous slice of supremely executed observational comedy.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Audra McDonald To Kick Off Broadway @ Series At The Town Hall; Kelli O’Hara And Jeremy Jordan To Follow

The internationally acclaimed Broadway concert series hosted and music directed by SiriusXM Radio Star Seth Rudetsky is finally landing smack dab in the middle of Broadway itself this fall. kicking-off with legendary Tony, Grammy, and Emmy Award-winner Audra McDonaldon November 12.
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FIRST LOOK: Don Cheadle, Regina Hall, Jay Ellis And Quincy Brown Star In New Shows, Movies

There’s some good new TV and movies coming down the pike and we’ve got the first look at the new trailers. Don Cheadle and Regina Hall have a new 80’s themed Wall Street show coming to Showtime, Quincy Brown (Al B. Sure’s son and Diddy’s stepson) and actress/singer Kat Graham have a new movie The Holiday Calendar headed to Netflix, and Insecure‘s Jay Ellis stars in a thriller based on the popular Escape Room attractions, though hopefully those are not as scary in real life as the one in the movie.

Here are the trailers and release dates for all three. Which one are you feeling?

ESCAPE ROOM 

Jay Ellis, Taylor Russell

Six strangers from different walks of life including an executive (Jay Ellis) and a college student (Russell of Lost In Space fame) are invited to compete to win a million dollars by being the first to crack the code to get out of the Escape Room. As you can imagine, things soon turn scary.

BLACK MONDAY

Showtime comedy series about October 19, 1987 when the stock market lost a quarter of its value on a single day. Cheadle plays Rod Jaminski, Wall Street’s first Black millionaire.

Showtime, January 20th, 2019

THE HOLIDAY CALENDAR 

Netflix, November 2

Kat Graham. Ron Cephas Jones, Quincy Brown

A woman receives a holiday calendar from her grandfather and magical things start happening.

PHOTO: Showtime


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Jim Taylor, Hall of Fame Former Fullback for the Green Bay Packers, Dies at 83

(GREEN BAY, Wis.) — Hall of Fame fullback Jim Taylor of the Green Bay Packers has died at 83.

The team says a family friend told the Packers he died early Saturday.

Taylor played on the great Packer teams and was the league’s MVP in 1962. He won four NFL titles and scored the first rushing touchdown in Super Bowl history.

Taylor spent 10 seasons in the NFL after being drafted in the second round by Green Bay in 1958 out of LSU. He joined a backfield that featured Paul Hornung and began to thrive when Packers coach Vince Lombardi took over in 1959.

Lombardi came up with the concept of the Packers Sweep, which featured pulling guards and Taylor or Hornung running around the end. But it was 6-foot, 216-pound Taylor who showed the play’s punishing promise.

Sports – TIME

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Photo Flash: Audra McDonald and Renee Fleming Open the 2018- 2019 Season at Carnegie Hall with The San Francisco Symphony

Tonight, Carnegie Hall opened its 2018-2019 season with a sold out gala benefit concert featuring theSan Francisco Symphonyconducted by Music Director and Carnegie Hall Perspectives artistMichael Tilson Thomas.The programincluded Gershwin’sCuban OvertureandAn American in Parisas well as Liszt’sMephisto WaltzNo. 1. Mr. Tilson Thomas and the orchestra were joined on this celebratory occasion by renowned sopranosRenee FlemingandAudra McDonaldoffering vocal selections by Gershwin, Rodgers, Villa-Lobos, Stephen Sondheim, and others.
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Common, Regina Hall, and Russell Hornsby Share Lessons from ‘The Hate U Give’

Based on the book by Angie Thomas, the new film The Hate U Give shares the perspective of a teenaged black girl torn between two worlds. The novel’s film adaption speaks to a wide range of audiences and experiences as it addresses the challenges of 16-year old Starr Carter. Starr’s problems cross boundaries and provide lessons that can be applied to our personal and professional lives as it relates to our diverse and often polarizing political environment.

The film addresses myriad topics such as code-switching, covering, discrimination, diversity, police brutality, gun violence, trauma, voting, and activism. Film director George Tillman and the cast addressed these issues at a recent forum sponsored by the 48th Annual Legislative ConferenceCongresswoman Val Demings of Florida’s 10th District, and the Multicultural Media Correspondents Association (MMCA). Actress Regina Hall, actor Russell Hornsby, and hip-hop artist/actor/activist Common also provided valuable insight around a plethora of timely themes found within the emotionally charged film.

The Hate U Give

Russell Hornsby, Regina Hall, and Common (Photo Credit: Patricia McDougall Photography)

Code-Switching in The Hate U Give 

Code-switching is the practice of switching between languages or dialects in conversation to suit the setting. Starr is continually switching between two worlds; the poor, predominantly black neighborhood where she lives and the wealthy, mostly white prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is soon shattered when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend at the hands of a police officer. Facing pressure from all sides of the community, we witness Starr struggling with communication issues we often face in our daily work lives, as we determine the suitable language and vernacular to communicate with colleagues. Starr must find her voice and decide to stand up for what is right.

‘Covering’ and Other Themes 

Covering is the act of downplaying or hiding certain aspects of yourself so as not to appear different. The Deloitte University Leadership Center for Inclusion report, Uncovering Talent, reveals that 61% of all employees “cover” their identities in some way by downplaying specific attributes, for fear of drawing unwanted attention or making others uncomfortable. Too often, covering does not provide the positive consequences we hope to achieve and is often detrimental to our self-esteem and performance. Taking cues from Starr, we understand covering is unhealthy and does not provide the results we hope for. Eventually, we remove the veil as the pressure to hide becomes unbearable and we show up as our authentic selves.

Starr encounters and manages blatant discrimination and negative treatment based on her race throughout the film. Many workplaces are plagued with discrimination and the lack of opportunities for people of color. In fact, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced 84,254 workplace discrimination charges were filed with the agency nationwide in 2017. By recognizing a lack of diversity in the workplace, we can aim to ensure people of color are in decision-making roles with decision-making power. Hornsby said it best when he stated, “the diverse stories we are able to tell from a black perspective are stories that are from opportunities. We show that we can do the work. We show that we are capable. We show that we are talented. We just need to have an opportunity.” Providing opportunities is a step toward combatting discrimination.

There is not one character in The Hate U Give exempt from some level of trauma based on events in the film. In the same way, we are not exempt from the trauma we experience directly or indirectly in daily life. According to studies, 66% of the general population has been traumatized at some point. Eighty percent of workers feel stressed on the job, and approximately 1 million workers are absent each day due to stress. It is essential to be aware that the incidents that occur in The Hate U Give are not limited to the movies but that we are encountering people who have these experiences in our professional lives on a daily basis. Empathy and sensitivity to the experience of others are needed more than ever in our professional and personal lives.

Diversity

When discussing The Hate U Give, Hall eloquently explained how images reflect who we are, how we are perceived, and how we are received in the world: “Those images shape how the world is shaped and affects us when we apply for jobs.” When asked about diversity and his role in the film, Common explained how art gives us more insight into life. “Every time I get a new character, I start to understand human beings more. That’s why I want to play characters that are not like me, and that do not think like I think,” he expressed. Being exposed to people, experiences, and places that are not like us or that are different from our everyday lives is the key to diversity. Common and the cast agreed that when it comes to diversity we have a long way to go, but it is important to acknowledge the growth and recognize there are people on the front lines who are moving forward and being leaders in the area of diversity.

The Hate U Give reminds us that it is not only about diversity of color and gender, but also diversity in thought. As art imitates life, we continue to recognize that people come from all walks of life and that we are not monolithic as a people.  As Hornby expressed, “There is no right or wrong, there is only truth.”  As business owners and professionals, we must join efforts with organizations like the MMCA to ignite and sustain a call to truth and action that results in a significant increase in diverse representation in all areas of industry. At the same time, we must be keenly aware of the effect the lack of diversity and other factors have on our health and our productivity. The Hate U Give is a powerful tool that can be used to continue the dialogue and to challenge misconceptions that prevent progress.

The Hate U Give is in select theaters on Oct. 5 and everywhere on Oct. 19.

 

 

 

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‘Ray Donovan’ Actor Pooch Hall Arrested for DUI and Letting 2-Year-Old Drive

“Ray Donovan” actor Marion “Pooch” Hall was arrested Wednesday night for DUI and felony child endangerment, after allegedly letting his 2-year-old son drive because he was too wasted to steer. Law enforcement sources tell TMZ, Hall, who plays…

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