Robinson unconcerned about firingsDETROIT -- If the news...

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May 23, 1991|By Peter Schmuck | Peter Schmuck,Sun Staff Correspondent

DETROIT — Robinson unconcerned about firings

DETROIT -- If the news of a second managerial change in the space of 24 hours was unsettling, Frank Robinson did not seem particularly unsettled.

John Wathan was fired by the Kansas City Royals yesterday, Don Zimmer by the Cubs the day before. Both changes were made because the teams involved were underachieving, but both teams had better records than the Baltimore Orioles.

Robinson has a team that has, so far, fallen far short of expectations, but he does not appear to be looking over his shoulder.

"I don't know what other managers think," he said, "but I don't sit around thinking, 'I hope I don't get fired.' My philosophy is, every day I wake up and if I'm still the manager, I'm going to the ballpark and do the best job I can. That's all I can worry about."

His job does not appear to be in danger. The Orioles pride themselves on the stability of their organization. They have only had nine managers in the club's 37-year history. Robinson's contract calls for him to move into an upper management job (or receive a buyout) if he leaves the manager's office, but he has expressed the desire to remain manager through the first season at the new stadium.

If the club has other ideas, there has been no indication that a change is imminent. Robinson said he has noticed no significant change in the support he has received from general manager Roland Hemond.

"Has he changed?" Robinson said. "I think we all change a little bit because losing takes its toll. Is he the same as he would be if we were 23-13 instead of 13-23? No. Neither am I. Is he as supportive as ever? Yes."

Johnson wants to stay

Dave Johnson has heard the rumors. He knows that the club was shopping him around the major leagues last week. But he doesn't want to leave Baltimore.

"I don't want to go anywhere," he said. "I feel I can help here and I think that's going to happen. At the end of the season, I'm going to be one of the guys who have given them consistent innings."

Johnson is on the 15-day disabled list with a groin injury. He had been in the bullpen since his fourth start of the season, but is hoping to get back into the starting rotation soon.

The club apparently did try to trade him last week, but doesn't figure to make a move with him until he comes back from the injury.

No TV Saturday

Home Team Sports will not televise the Orioles game against the New York Yankees Saturday, pre-empting it for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals. HTS will replace Saturday's game with a telecast of Monday's against the Cleveland Indians.

Bill Ripken scratched

Second baseman Bill Ripken had to be scratched from the starting lineup yesterday because of the strained hamstring that has been bothering him for several days. Ripken was replaced in the lineup by utility infielder Juan Bell.

Evans, Devereaux back Friday?

Robinson has been pointing to Friday as the target date for outfielders Mike Devereaux and Dwight Evans to return to the starting lineup, but he said yesterday that he was merely "hopeful" that they would be ready to come back.

Both players have been sidelined with groin strains. Devereaux said that he feels confident he will be able to play. Evans is taking it day by day.


Friday night's game against the New York Yankees at Memorial Stadium will feature a commemorative pin giveaway for fans 15 and older. . . . Cal Ripken is tied with Brady Anderson for the club lead in bunt hits with three. . . . Tuesday night's comeback victory was the first time the Orioles have come from behind to win in the ninth inning since last July 16. . . . The Orioles have errors in only 16 of 37 games. The club is 11-10 in games in which it has played errorless defense. The Orioles are 2-14 in the games in which they made at least one error.

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