Brooks Robinson played the hot corner for the Baltimore Orioles better than anyone else in baseball history.
Instead of an oven or a stove top grill, this third baseman was known as Hoover, short for the old American standard in vacuum cleaners. He sucked up every baseball hit his way.
In the same way Hoover vacuums were the predominant household appliance of the 1950s, 60s and 70s, Brooks Robinson was the undisputed best fielding third baseman who ever played the game.
Named to Major League Baseball’s All Century Team in 1999, Robinson played third base for the Baltimore Orioles for an incredible 23 years.
Brooks Robinson Won 16 Gold Gloves in His Career
Robinson’s skill at third base is legendary. With fast hands, quick feet, uncanny expectation and an accurate strong arm, Robinson won an astounding 16 consecutive American League Gold Gloves from 1960 through 1975. He was also named to 15 consecutive American League All-Star teams during the same time. In addition, he finished tops in fielding percentage among third basemen 11 seasons in a row and was voted American League Most Valuable Player in 1964.
Thanks in large part to Brooks Robinson’s consistent stellar play at third base and at the plate, the Baltimore Orioles boasted the best record in all of baseball during Hoover’s 23 years with the organization. Robinson ended his career with a very respectable lifetime batting average of .267 and 2,848 total hits, 268 home runs and 1,357 runs batted in.
Hoover participated in four World Series. He won two of them with the Birds, one in 1966 and again in 1970 in which he was named the Most Valuable Player.
The Orioles retired Robinson’s number five jersey in 1977. He was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in 1983 during his first year of eligibility.
This former Baltimore Oriole is also my #23 overall pick in one of my sports comic books Favorite Sports Nicknames.
Comparing Robinson to baseball legend Babe Ruth, Gordon Beard, an Associated Press Baltimore-based sports reporter remarked about the player called The Hoover Vacuum Cleaner, “Brooks never had a candy bar named after him. But, in Baltimore, people named their children after him.”
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MIKE – thee ultimate talking head on sports!