In spring training, because there are so many player in camp, you have roster numbers that will run sometimes from 1 up to 99. But in the Washington Nationals training camp in Viera, you won’t find anyone wearing number 20.
Former manager Frank Robinson and team owners may still not be ready to reach some sort of agreement on the proper way to honor the Hall of Famer for being the first manager of the Nationals when they came to Washington. But his place in team history is still being honored. Since Robinson left after the 2006 season, no National has worn number 20, Robinson’s number — and that is not by accident. Equipment manager Mike Wallace has held back the number so far “out of respect,” Wallace said. Wallace said no one has come to the team and asked for it, so it is not a case of refusing to use it.
It may come up someday. For now, though, it remains “retired” until maybe someday the Nationals will do it officially.