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Ted Williams Photo   Ted Williams
"I hope somebody hits .400 soon. Then people can start pestering that guy with questions about the last guy to hit .400. "

Full Name: Theodore Samuel Williams
Nicknames: The Kid
Thumper
The Splendid Splinter
 
Physique: 6' 3", 127 lbs
Left-Handed Hitter
 
Born: Aug 30, 1918, San Diego, CA
Died: Jul 5, 2002  (84 years old)
 
Ranking: #6 All-time ( #5    All    #7 )
.344
career average

2,654 hits

Boston Red Sox
1939 - 1960

Hall of Fame: 1966



Rarely was Williams stopped in his pursuit of hitting the baseball. As a rookie in 1939 he led the AL with 145 RBI. His next five full seasons he paced the loop in runs scored. In 1941, 1942, 1947, and 1949 he topped all AL hitters in home runs, reaching a peak of 43. He led the league in walks eight times, and in on-base percentage a record twelve times.

He was a patient hitter who refused to venture out of the strike zone for a pitch. He finished with more than 2,000 walks in just under 2,300 games. He also hit for average ? winning league titles six times, including at the age of 23 and 40. His lifetime average was .344 on the strength of 2,654 hits.

As a member of the Red Sox he anchored a formidable lineup. Jimmie Foxx, Joe Cronin, Bobby Doerr, Vern Stephens, Dom DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, Billy Goodman, George Kell, and Jackie Jensen were some of the sluggers he teamed with. Unfortunately he was unable to translate his success into a World Series win for the Sox. In his only opportunity in 1946, he managed just five singles in 25 at-bats.

For years Williams battled the media in Boston, a fact which likely cost him two MVP awards. Twice Boston writers kept him off their ballot completely ? delivering the honor to Joe DiMaggio. In 1946 DiMaggio and Williams were nearly involved in the greatest trade in baseball history. Fans had speculated as to how Williams would fare in Yankee Stadium with the short right field line. Conversely, Red Sox rooters wondered just how well DiMaggio would hit into the Green Monster. With the preliminaries of the trade in place, the Red Sox backed out, fearing The Yankee Clipper's hurt foot.

In his final season, 1960, he hit a dramatic home run in Fenway Park in his final at-bat. It was his 29th of the season, a record for players at least 40 years old. He returned to baseball as a batting instructor for the Red Sox and took the job as manager of the Washington Senators in 1969. After guiding them to a fourth place finish, he was named Manager of the Year, but by 1972 he was tired of dealing with modern players and he ended his baseball days. He was later inducted into the Sportsman's Fishing Hall of Fame ? known as one of the best fly fisherman in American history. He had been inducted to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1966. In his acceptance speech he lobbied for the inclusion of Negro League players in the Cooperstown shrine.

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