Everybody reading this blog probably knows that Frank Robinson was the 1st African-American manager in baseball. (Although Ernie Banks did manage a couple of innings for the Cubs in 1973 after Whitey Lockman was ejected, but this doesn’t really count.)
Robinson was the Player/Manager for the Cleveland Indians when they began their season on April 8, 1975 against the Yankees at Cleveland Stadium. Robinson was the DH and smacked a 1st inning home run off Doc Medich. I remember watching that game, and immediately stopped being a Frank Robinson fan. (Sorry, but team loyalty comes first) The Yankees lost that game, or should I say the Indians and Frank Robinson won that game 5-3.
So Frank Robinson was the 1st African-American Manager in the American League. Who was the 1st African-American Manager in the National League?
Six years later, on April 9, 1981 at Candlestick Park, Frank Robinson became the 1st African-American to manage a National League team. The Giants lost 4-1 in extra innings.
The baseball wheel of change sure moves slowly.