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PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Peter Carry
July 06, 1964
On June 16 the Los Angeles Angels were in ninth place in the American League, and their lineup indicated that was exactly where they belonged. After all, they had a pitcher playing right field and baiting cleanup. But starting on June 16, the Angels won 11 straight games and moved up to sixth place. The pitcher? Well, he is still in the outfield, and that is where he is likely to stay. His name is Willie Smith Sr.—"Wonderful Willie" in Los Angeles—and he has been hitting like that other Willie up north. During the Angels' surge, Willie hit .406 and drove in 13 runs. On June 22 he hit a single to beat the Senators. The next night he hit a two-run homer to beat them again 2-0. The night after that he hit a three-run homer to beat the Senators a third time. Willie Smith arrived in Los Angeles via the back door. He started out as a boxer but decided, after winning eight of 10 bouts and suffering a broken nose three times, that the ring was not for him. He turned to baseball, played for half a dozen Negro teams, then Duluth and then Detroit before he was traded to the Angels this spring for Julio Navarro. Neither Navarro, who is back in the minors, nor Smith was much at pitching, but Willie did show he could hit. As a pinch hitter he was tops in the American League, with 7 for 14, a combination of figures that inspired Manager Bill Rigney to start Smith in the outfield. Willie jumped at the opportunity, and the Angels have jumped right with him.
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July 06, 1964

Player Of The Week

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On June 16 the Los Angeles Angels were in ninth place in the American League, and their lineup indicated that was exactly where they belonged. After all, they had a pitcher playing right field and baiting cleanup. But starting on June 16, the Angels won 11 straight games and moved up to sixth place. The pitcher? Well, he is still in the outfield, and that is where he is likely to stay. His name is Willie Smith Sr.—"Wonderful Willie" in Los Angeles—and he has been hitting like that other Willie up north. During the Angels' surge, Willie hit .406 and drove in 13 runs. On June 22 he hit a single to beat the Senators. The next night he hit a two-run homer to beat them again 2-0. The night after that he hit a three-run homer to beat the Senators a third time. Willie Smith arrived in Los Angeles via the back door. He started out as a boxer but decided, after winning eight of 10 bouts and suffering a broken nose three times, that the ring was not for him. He turned to baseball, played for half a dozen Negro teams, then Duluth and then Detroit before he was traded to the Angels this spring for Julio Navarro. Neither Navarro, who is back in the minors, nor Smith was much at pitching, but Willie did show he could hit. As a pinch hitter he was tops in the American League, with 7 for 14, a combination of figures that inspired Manager Bill Rigney to start Smith in the outfield. Willie jumped at the opportunity, and the Angels have jumped right with him.

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