|Date of Birth
||6 May 1931
|Place of Birth
||Westfield, Alabama, United States
|| Mae Louise Allen (m. 1971–2013), Margherite Wendell Chapman (m. 1956–1963)
||1 Son, Michael Mays
||Former Baseball center fielder
||Buck, The Say Hey Kid
Willie Howard Mays Jr. is an American former baseball center fielder. He spent most of his 22-season big league Baseball (MLB) career playing for the New York/San Francisco Giants (1951–1952, 1954–1972) before finishing his career with the ny Mets (1972–1973).
Considered one among the best baseball players of all time, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979. As of his birthday in 2021, he's the oldest living Baseball Hall of Famer.
Early life and Family
Willie Howard Mays, Jr., was born on May 6, 1931, in Westfield, Alabama, which was a primarily black company town near Fairfield. His father, Cat Mays, was a talented ballplayer with the black team at the local iron plant.Annie Satterwhite, his mother, was a gifted basketball and ace in highschool .His parents never married and separated when Mays was three.
Mays was raised by his father and two girls, Sarah and Ernestine.Cat Mays worked as a railway porter and later at the steel mills in Westfield. He exposed Willie to baseball at an early age, playing catch with Willie at five and allowing him to take a seat on the bench together with his Birmingham Industrial League team at ten. His favorite ballplayer growing up was Joe DiMaggio; other favorites were Williams and Musial .Mays played multiple sports at Fairfield Industrial highschool .
Willie Mays Wife
Mays first marriage was to Margherite Wendell Chapman (from 1956-1963) and therefore the couple had adopted a son named Michael together.He married again in 1971 to Mae Louise Allen. His second wife died in 2013 after battling for years with Alzheimer’s.
Willie Mays Net Worth 2021
Willie Mays is a former American baseball center fielder who features a net worth of $3 million dollars.Before the 1963 season, Mays signed a contract worth a record-setting $105,000 per season (equivalent to $876,864 in 2019).
Mays' baseball career began in 1948; he played briefly with the Chattanooga Choo-Choos, a Negro minors team, during the summer. Later that year, Mays joined the Birmingham Black Barons of the Negro American League, managed by Piper Davis, who had been a teammate of Mays' father on the economic team.Several big league Baseball (MLB) teams were curious about signing Mays, but that they had to attend until he graduated highschool to supply him a contract.
The Boston Braves and Brooklyn Dodgers both scouted him, but ny Giants scout Eddie Montague was the one who signed him to a $4,000 contract. Mays spent the remainder of 1950 with the category B Trenton Giants of the Interstate League, batting .353.
Playing excellent defense, Mays was called up to the Giants on Commonwealth Day , 1951. Mays was at a movies in Sioux City , Iowa, when he acknowledged he was being called up. Mays initially was reluctant to simply accept the promotion because he didn't believe he was able to face big league pitchers, but stunned Giants manager Leo Durocher called Mays directly and said, "Quit costing the baseball club money with long-distance phone calls and join the team."
U.S. Army (1952–1953) - Soon after the 1951 season ended, Mays discovered he had been drafted by the us Army to serve within the Korean War . Before Mays left to hitch the military , he was ready to play the primary few weeks of the 1952 season with the Giants. He batted .236 with four home runs in 34 games but surprised sportswiters like Red Smith when, in his last game before reporting, he drew cheers from fans of the Brooklyn Dodgers, the Giants' archrivals.
After his induction into the military on May 29, Mays reported to Fort Eustis where he spent much of his time playing on military baseball teams with other major leaguers.It was at Fort Eustis that Mays learned the basket catch from fellow Fort Eustis outfielder Al Fortunato. On July 25, 1953, Mays suffered a small fracture in his left foot when he slid into third base during a game, but he made a swift recovery.
Mays missed about 266 games thanks to military service. Discharged on March 1, 1954, Mays reported to Giants' preseason the subsequent day.Following the Korean War , the Congressional Armed Services Defenses Subcommittee investigated the military records of ten athletes who had been drafted into the service, and a Congressional report dated July 22 determined that the athletes were "pampered" or "coddled" while in uniform. However, the report didn't find Mays guilty of any wrongdoing.
Championship and MVP
In 1955, Mays scored 51 homers and within the next season 36 homers and 40 bases and have become the second player to hitch “30-30 club”. He performed brilliantly during the last three years when Giants was in ny .Mays won the Gold Glove Award in 1957. He became the 4th player within the big league history to hitch the 20-20-20 club, a task that no player could accomplish within the last 16 years.
In 1958, Mays relocated with the Giants to San Francisco and contested for the National League batting title, during which he collected three hits and finished together with his career-high score of .347.He was made the team captain in 1961. That year, the Giants finished on the third position and won 85 games. Mays also had one among his best games therein year, hitting 4 homers against the Milwaukee Braves.
In 1965, Mays won his second MVP award and he hit his 500th career home run. within the next season he finished third within the National League MVP voting.The 41-year-old Mays was traded to the ny Mets in 1972, for pitcher Charlie Williams and $50,000 - it had been because the Giants was losing money and will not assure him an income after retirement.
In the same year, Mays made his Mets debut and had put ny ahead at Shea Stadium and within the next season, during a game against the Cincinnati Reds, his hit had 660th homer.In 1973, Mays was honored by The ny Mets franchise by organizing ‘Willie Mays Night’, where he announced his retirement and thanked his ny fans.
From 1973-1979, May remained within the ny Mets organization, after his retirement from the baseball, because the team’s hitting instructor. He shaped the baseball careers of future Mets’ stars like Lee Mazzilli.
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