Perhaps Buck Showalter’s smartest move since becoming manager of the Orioles has been incorporating successful players from the team’s past into the MLB franchise’s present.
On Monday, Showalter introduced 19-year-old outfield prospect Josh Hart to Frank Robinson, the Baseball Hall of Famer and Triple Crown-winner who was part of two World Series champions in Baltimore (1966 and 1970).
Hart, the Orioles’ supplemental pick in last year’s draft, had just arrived at the complex to take part in the workout. Robinson, the Hall of Famer, was invited to speak with the players on the camp roster.
“He was coming down the hall and I was walking Frank out of the locker room,” Showalter asked. “I go, ‘Hold on a second, Frank. Josh, do you know who this is?'”
Showalter already knew the answer.
“He says, ‘No,’ and I said, ‘OK, by this time tomorrow I want a page on Frank Robinson,'” Showalter said. “I said, ‘You go home, you research it and you come back tomorrow and have it on my desk.”
As of 2 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Hart had still not completed the assignment. He has till the end of the day, and he can’t copy and paste.
BTW, Buck won’t accept an e-mailed report from Hart. “It’s got to be on a piece of paper.” #orioles
— Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) February 25, 2014
UPDATE: Hart finished the assignment yesterday, per Kubatko.
Hart doesn’t know when he’ll be invited back to the major league camp, but he’ll have his homework assignment ready for Showalter.
“The next time I see him, that paper is going on his desk,” Hart said. “As soon as I walk in.”