In October 1974, Indians general manager Phil Seghi announced that Frank Robinson would be the team’s player-manager, making the veteran star the first #African American manager in big league history. He went a combined 160-158 over his first two seasons on the job, and retired as an active player at the end of 1976. Robinson finished his 21-year career with 586 home runs, then fourth all time, and was also among the leaders in runs (1,829) and RBIs (1,812). However, his move to a full-time managerial role didn’t help the team, and he was let go after starting 1977 with a 26-31 record.
Named manager of the San Francisco Giants in 1981, Robinson was voted the UPI Manager of the Year and inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982. However, he was fired again before the end of the 1984 season.
Upon returning to Baltimore, Robinson took over as manager after the team began 1989 with six straight losses, then endured the remainder of what stretched into a record 21-game winless streak. The Orioles improved to 87 wins the following season, with Robinson earning AL Manager of the Year honors, but he was reassigned to the organization’s front office in 1991.