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Frank RobinsonWaPo columnist Thomas Boswell has a story in today’s paper about how the Nationals have decided there is no room in their organization for former manager Frank Robinson.

The common wisdom when the Nationals declined to renew Robinson’s contract was that they would offer him a front office consulting job. Something, anything, to keep him in the organization that he had been so loyal to. After all, it was Robinson who consented to manage the lame duck Expos, even when the team had no fans, no future and no hope.

But instead, the Nationals seem to have decided to move as far away from Robinson as possible, as quickly as possible.

And Robinson is pissed:

“I’m done with them,” Robinson told The Post on Wednesday. “I have nothing against the organization per se. It’s two people that I’m concerned with: Jim and Stan.”

Jim and Stan are, of course, Nationals GM Jim “I only had one beer” Bowden and Stan Kasten, the team’s new president. Kasten says he debated whether or not to offer Robinson a role with the team.

 ”I was really torn,” Kasten said yesterday. “That’s why the decision took so long.”

The decision was to offer Robinson nothing. Nothing, but a plane ticket to spring training so that he could serve as a special assistant to the guy who is replacing him. Ouch.

But Boswell says he knows Robinson and that the baseball legend isn’t always easy to work with.

Last spring, I listened as Robinson went into a 10-minute fuming monologue about how the Nationals had insulted him — by not giving him the right cellphone plan. Others in the front office had a different plan. What did it mean? Was he out of the loop? Was it a hint he wasn’t wanted? Why, it was an injustice. To him, anyway.

“That’s a glimpse. He’s not a guy who endears himself,” a team source said. “He has a long history of a short shelf life.”

Maybe the Nationals decided that rebuilding the franchise would be easier without Robinson around. And maybe they’re right. But he still deserved better. He’s Frank Robinson, after all.

3 Responses to “No room for frank in D.C.”

  1. Sarah Green says:

    Nick, what could be more un-American than mathematically calculating the economic tipping point of the all-you-can-eat buffet? The point is not to save money (another un-American activity for which I will have to report you) but to eat ALL YOU CAN EEEEAAAAAT! COOOOK-IEEEE! Me want cookie!

  2. Chalkdust says:

    I remember clearly when the Cincinnati Redlegs had all they could stand of Robinson and traded him to the Orioles for a fungo bat and a rubber arm. Frank Robinson was in the prime of his career, but the Reds management and their fans had seen enough. The experience humbled Frank, so he became a good team mate in Baltimore during the remainder of his time with the team until the very end.

    MLB did Frank a favor when they hired him to manage the Expos, a team in disarray. Now Robinson has burned his last bridge in baseball. Goodby Frank and good luck.

  3. Frank Robinson was a great player in Cincinnati !! He and Vada Pinson were branded as a clique and Robby was traded to Baltimore for Milt the wilt Pappas, what a joke trade !!!

    Frank was a great leader in Cincinnati , he had a GM WHO WANTED HIM GONE ; BILL CHEAP DEWITT 11

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