Robinson upset by Nats' slow decision about job status
WASHINGTON -- Former manager Frank Robinson will not return to the Washington Nationals with any sort of full-time job, and he said Wednesday it bothers him that the team took until this week to deliver that news.
"When someone doesn't want you around, they don't reach out to you," Robinson said in a telephone interview from California, where he lives. "They don't make you feel like you are wanted."
Robinson was told during the final week of the 2006 season, his fifth with the Expos-Nationals franchise, that he wouldn't be brought back as manager. At the time, there was a possibility raised about some sort of future role with the team for the Hall of Famer who hit 586 homers during his major league career.
But general manager Jim Bowden called Robinson on Monday to tell him the team did not have a spot for him.
"We have decided not to offer Frank a full-time position going forward," team president Stan Kasten said Wednesday at a round-table session with reporters. "It's a difficult decision for me personally, because all of us have so much respect for Frank. ... I have nothing critical to say about him."
Bowden did ask Robinson if he would be interested in coming to spring training -- with his expenses paid -- and then working with minor league players.
"He said he'd think and get back to me," Bowden said.
Said Robinson: "I've made a decision, but they made me wait 2½ months. I'm thinking it through and I will call them."
Kasten said the team is tentatively planning to honor Robinson at the Nationals' game May 20 against the Baltimore Orioles, a team he played for and managed.
Also Wednesday, the Nationals announced they had agreed to terms on pro contracts with four teens from the Dominican Republic: left-handed pitchers Randy Almonte and Francisco Vizcaino, right-hander Marcos Frias and catcher Ricardo Martinez.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press