Willie McGee (TRADING CARD DB)

Willie McGee

This article was written by Eric Vickrey

Willie McGee (TRADING CARD DB)There have been more successful players who wore the St. Louis Cardinals uniform — but few more beloved by fans than Willie McGee. A work ethic rooted in his upbringing allowed him to make the most of his natural abilities. The switch-hitter used exceptional bat speed to spray line drives all over the field and elite foot speed to run down fly balls and steal bases. Never one to showboat or seek the limelight, McGee remained humble despite being a World Series hero, MVP, four-time All-Star, and two-time batting champion.

Willie Dean McGee was born in San Francisco, California, on November 2, 1958. He was the fourth of six children born to Hurdice and Jessie Mae McGee. He grew up in the Bay Area town of Richmond. Hurdice worked as a machinist in the Oakland Naval Yards while Jessie raised the children at home. On Sundays, Hurdice served as a deacon in the Pentecostal Church. He also often worked a second job as a janitor to help make ends meet, and he brought the kids along to help. The kids got to play for an hour after school, and then Hurdice would pull up to the elementary school in his 1964 Impala and honk the horn for them to come help clean buildings.1

Love and discipline were the pillars on which Hurdice and Jessie raised their children. Based on their faith and church doctrine, cussing, smoking, and drinking were not allowed, television was frowned upon, and Sundays were reserved for the church, not baseball.2 However, that did not stop Willie. Hurdice had a habit of falling asleep after counting the day’s church offerings, and Willie would take this opportunity to sneak out of the house to play ball. “Every week I had it timed perfectly. I was scared to leave in front of him — I had that much respect for him,” he said in 1982.3

Willie loved sports as a child and played baseball, basketball, and football, depending on what was in season. However, it was baseball for which Willie developed a true passion. Around the age of 10, he found out that one could make a living playing baseball, and for a while he slept with his glove and bat while wearing his ball cap and cleats.4 The most sensitive of the McGee children, he was shy and lacked self-confidence.5 His little league coach described his posture on the baseball field as that of a child who “spilled the milk.”6 He attended Henry Ells High School where his reserved nature initially kept him from trying out for the baseball team. He eventually joined the team in the 10th grade at the urging of coach Bill Erkkila.7 “I was his P.E. teacher when he was a sophomore, and he was tiny, scrawny, and very quiet. His outstanding athletic attribute was speed,” Erkkila later remembered.8

One of his high school teammates was Eddie Miller, a 1975 second-round draft pick of the Texas Rangers who had a seven-year major league career. “I had never really thought about playing pro ball, but Eddie came around and started talking to me about it. I got my thinking straightened out and really worked hard this season.” said McGee in 1976.9 His hard work was evident in his senior year as he led the Alameda County Athletic League in hitting.10 McGee’s senior season totals included a .408 batting average, four home runs, 15 runs batted in, and 19 stolen bases, earning him a spot on the All-Northern California Baseball Team and recognition before a Giants game at Candlestick Park.11

McGee’s successful senior campaign caught the attention of pro scouts, and in the June 1976 draft he was taken in the seventh round by the Chicago White Sox. McGee declined the White Sox offer of $12,000 and instead enrolled at Diablo Valley College in the Bay Area town of Pleasant Hill.12 “I came pretty close to signing with the White Sox, but I didn’t feel ready. I thought I should play for another year,” McGee told the Berkeley Gazette in 1977.13 Several years later, he admitted that he was disappointed with the White Sox offer. “I guess I thought too much of myself at the time,” he said.14

The 1977 January draft consisted of a regular phase and a secondary phase for players who were previously drafted but did not sign. With the 15th pick of the first round of the secondary phase, the New York Yankees selected McGee. He kept his commitment to play for Diablo Valley College and hit .286, helping the school win the state community college championship.15 In June, Yankee scout Wayne Morgan signed the 18-year-old to a $7,500 contract. “I probably could have got more if I knew what I was doing,” McGee later admitted.16 In 2020, Morgan recalled that McGee didn’t make much contact, but what stood out was how the ball jumped off his bat when he did.17 “Great speed, very shy and quiet,” added Morgan.

McGee was assigned to short season A-ball with the Oneonta Yankees of the New York-Penn League. In 65 games, he hit .236 with a .281 OBP and just two home runs. In 1978, he played for Fort Lauderdale, another class A team. The natural right-hander also started switch hitting.18 In 124 games, he hit .251 and improved his OBP to .331 with 50 walks. He displayed little power, accumulating only 12 extra-base hits, none of which were home runs. Speed continued to be his standout attribute. He was clocked at 3.8 seconds from home to first, the fastest in the Yankees’ organization.19 “They say you can’t steal first base, but Willie sure can,” said manager Doug Holmquist in reference to McGee’s penchant for infield hits.20

McGee progressed up the minor league ladder and was assigned to the Yankees’ Double-A team in West Haven, Connecticut, for the 1979 season. He hit just .243 through 49 games and had trouble with the curveball. A swollen foot from being struck by a pickoff attempt also contributed to his struggles.21 He found himself on the bench before being sent back to Fort Lauderdale due to a roster crunch.22 With this demotion and the stress of a long-distance relationship with a girl back home, he considered quitting the game. After calling his father and telling him he didn’t think he could make it in baseball and was coming home, his father had a stern response: “Boy, you want to be a ball player? Be a ball player! Ain’t nothin’ for you here.” “From that day, I didn’t worry if the water was hot no more,” Willie later recalled, “I just got in and tried to swim across.”23 Playing with a more carefree attitude the rest of the season with Fort Lauderdale, he enjoyed his most successful stretch in pro ball, hitting .318 with a .378 OBP in 46 games. His only home run was of the inside-the-park variety.24

McGee was again assigned to Double-A for the 1980 season, this time with the Nashville Sounds of the Southern League. A foot injury and then a fractured jaw suffered in a collision with teammate Ted Wilborn limited his season to 78 games. He hit .283 with a .343 OBP for a team loaded with talented players such as Wilborn, Steve Balboni, Buck Showalter, and Pat Tabler. After the 1980 season, the Yankees signed Dave Winfield, adding to an already crowded group of outfielders that included Jerry Mumphrey, Bobby Brown, Oscar Gamble, and Reggie Jackson. McGee looked at this group and thought, “Oh boy, I’ve got no chance.’25 He was removed from the Yankees’ 40-man roster to make room for Winfield and returned to Nashville for a second season in 1981. Balboni and Tabler had moved up the organizational ladder, but the Sounds restocked with other talented players such as Don Mattingly and Otis Nixon. McGee was red hot to start the season with 13 hits in his first 25 at-bats.26 However, another injury interrupted his season on April 24 when he dislocated his hip while running the bases, causing him to miss five weeks. After returning to action and regaining form, another freak injury occurred on July 25: he was struck on the face by a thrown ball while running to first base.27 Diagnosed with a hairline fracture of the cheekbone, he only missed a few games and returned to action wearing a protective facemask. For the season, he hit .322 and displayed more power than previous years with seven home runs. Along with Mattingly, he was named to the Southern League All-Star Team.

In October 1981, the Yankees approached the Cardinals about acquiring left-handed pitcher Bob Sykes. The Redbirds asked for McGee in return based on reports from scout Hal Smith.28 The Yankees saw McGee as expendable given their depth of outfielders already under contract. Sykes, a 26-year-old with a 23-26 record in five seasons with Detroit and St. Louis, would develop a sore arm and never throw a pitch for the Bronx Bombers. McGee found out about the trade while reading the transactions in the newspaper. He cried as he told his mom the news.29 “When I was traded, it hurt, then I realized it was a blessing.”30

At spring training in 1982, McGee impressed Cardinals manager Whitey Herzog. “Got a quick bat,” said Herzog. “It’s unusual to see a young hitter with a quick bat from both sides of the plate.”31 The Yankees, perhaps regretting trading away McGee, reportedly tried to reacquire their former farmhand, but the Cards declined their overtures.32 “Willie showed us enough in spring training to know we had something special.” said Herzog.33

The Cardinals broke camp with Lonnie Smith and George Hendrick locked in as starting outfielders and Dane Iorg and promising young David Green set to fill the other outfield spot. McGee was sent to triple-A Louisville, though bruised ribs suffered at the end of spring training delayed his debut. He had played just 13 games when Green strained a hamstring. The Cards needed a center fielder, and McGee’s number was called. The 23-year-old, who figured he’d be spending the whole year with Louisville, was surprised. “It blew my mind.” 34

Wearing jersey number 51, McGee made his major league debut on May 10 as a late-inning replacement for Iorg. He was used mostly as a pinch hitter during his first two weeks with St. Louis. On May 24, the Cardinals were visiting San Francisco. Herzog gave Hendrick the night off and McGee made just his second start of the season. In front of family and friends at Candlestick Park, McGee drove in three runs with a bases-loaded triple. When he played, he hit, and it wasn’t long before McGee was the Cardinals’ everyday center fielder.

The rookie was needled and teased by teammates, including Hendrick. This initially bothered him until he understood they did so because they liked him. Hendrick, along with coach Dave Ricketts and teammates Bruce Sutter, Bob Forsch, and Ozzie Smith, served as mentors. Smith took McGee under his wing more literally, allowing him to live in his home. It was months before the always respectful McGee called Mrs. Smith by her first name.35

McGee led the National League in batting average in early July and remained over .300 for most of his rookie season. His first career home run was a grand slam off Ken Dayley of the Atlanta Braves on July 20. He finished the season with a .296 average, four home runs and 24 stolen bases. As McGee flourished, so too did the Cardinals, who won 92 games and captured the National League East.

McGee’s play could exasperate at times, but his contributions usually outweighed his mistakes. This was the case when the Cardinals faced the Braves in the NLCS. In Game One of the best-of-five series, he stopped at third base on what should have been an easy inside-the-park home run.36 In Game Two, he overran a hit by Rafael Ramirez allowing Ramirez to circle the bases. The play was ruled a single and a three-base error.37 Despite these blunders, the Cards won both games, and swept the Braves when McGee tripled, homered, and drove in three runs in Game Three. This set up a matchup with the Milwaukee Brewers in the World Series.

The 1982 Cardinals and Brewers could not have had more contrasting styles of play. Herzog’s “Runnin’ Redbirds” hit only 67 home runs and stole 200 bases while Harvey Kuenn’s “Wallbangers” slugged 216 homers and swiped just 84 bases. The two teams split the first two games, setting up a pivotal Game Three at Milwaukee’s County Stadium.

The scouting report on McGee was to give him a steady diet of off-speed pitches. The recipe had worked in Game Two when the rookie was retired all four trips to the plate. Milwaukee’s Game Three starter, Pete Vuckovich, stuck to this plan when McGee strolled to the plate with two on in the fifth inning. Vuckovich threw McGee a slider, and the rookie belted a home run to right field, breaking a scoreless tie. In the seventh inning, McGee tagged a Vuckovich change-up for a solo home run. “Some guy who hits four homers all year long, for crying out loud, dings me twice,” said Vuckovich after the game. “I’d like to know what Willie eats for breakfast.”38 McGee was equally impactful in the field. The centerfielder made a spectacular catch at the wall to rob Paul Molitor in the first inning. In the ninth inning, he leaped over the wall, robbing Gorman Thomas of a home run. “I don’t know anybody who every played a better World Series game,” said Herzog.39

Not only did the shy rookie have to deal with a throng of reporters about his play, but he also had to address questions about an unflattering nickname. During the NLCS, television commentator Howard Cosell had referred to McGee by the name “E.T.” in reference to what he had perceived as a resemblance to the popular movie character. McGee did not appreciate the comparison. “I’d really just like to be called Willie McGee instead of all this other junk.”40

The Cardinals defeated the Brewers in seven games to capture their first World Series title since 1967. As McGee was dowsed with champagne following Game Seven, he said: “Unreal, unbelievable, I just don’t know how to describe it.”41 He finished third in the National League Rookie of the Year voting behind Steve Sax and Johnny Ray.

Established as the Cardinals’ center fielder, McGee put up consistent numbers in 1983 and 1984. He was named to his first All-Star team in 1983 and received his first of three Gold Glove Awards. On June 23, 1984, versus the Cubs, he became the first Cardinal to hit for the cycle since Lou Brock in 1975. His performance was overshadowed by Ryne Sandberg, who homered twice off Sutter and drove in seven runs.

The 1985 season would prove to be the best of McGee’s career. Batting second in the order behind rookie Vince Coleman, who stole 110 bases, McGee became a more patient hitter, often taking one or two pitches to allow Coleman to run. He led the league in batting average (.353), hits (216), and triples (18), stole 56 bases, and posted an OPS of .887. His accolades for the season included making the All-Star team, winning the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Awards, and being voted as the National League’s Most Valuable Player. He was admittedly less shy and became a team leader, doing so by example rather than talking.42 He took rookie Coleman under his wing, letting him live in his home just as Smith had done for him.43 Coleman later recalled a time when he came home in the early morning hours after a night of carousing and McGee asked the rookie: “Did you come here to play baseball or run the streets?”44 McGee and the 101-win Cardinals returned to the World Series, losing to the Kansas City Royals in seven games. McGee recorded seven hits in 27 at bats for a .259 average in the series.

McGee struggled during the first half of the 1986 season, and a hamstring injury limited his season to 124 games. He hit just .256 and stole only 19 bases. Following the season, he underwent arthroscopic knee surgery to repair torn cartilage.45 There were off-season trade rumors involving the San Francisco Giants. McGee reported to spring training in 1987 ready to shake off these rumors and what he felt was unfair criticism in the media the year before. “I’ve got a lot of motivation this year,” said McGee, “I’ve got to prove myself all over.”46

On February 21, 1987, McGee married Vivian Manyweather. ‘Viv’ was also from Richmond, and the two had struck up a relationship in 1982. She had become his best friend, a confidant with whom he could talk if he had a bad game.47 McGee rebounded in 1987 to hit .285 and set career highs in home runs (11) and runs batted in (105) while mostly batting fifth in the order. The Cardinals disposed of the Giants in the NLCS and faced the Minnesota Twins in the World Series. McGee hit .370 in the Series, but the Twins bested the Cards in seven games. Following the 1987 season, the Cardinals signed McGee to a three-year, $4.1 million contract.48

Willie McGee (TRADING CARD DB)After making his fourth All-Star team and hitting .292 in 1988, McGee had another injury-riddled season in 1989. A pulled muscle in his side, a wrist injury, and a hamstring strain limited him to 211 plate appearances. When he was able to take the field, he was a shell of his usual self and hit .236 with just eight steals. He endured criticism from fans on talk radio and was often booed at Busch Stadium. “There are times I feel like the least appreciated ballplayer in St. Louis,” he said.49

A frustrated Herzog quit halfway through a disappointing 1990 season, but for McGee it was another bounce-back season. The 31-year-old had a career-best 22-game hitting streak and .335 batting average as the trade deadline approached. The Cardinals were in last place, had an up-and-coming center fielder named Ray Lankford, and McGee would be a free agent at season’s end. These factors led to a trade that sent McGee to the Oakland Athletics in exchange for Felix Jose, Stan Royer, and Daryl Green. McGee expressed mixed emotions about the trade, sad to be leaving friends and the organization where he had spent nine seasons, but happy to be going close to home.50 Though he spent the last month of the season in the American League, McGee had already reached the minimum number of plate appearances needed to qualify for the National League batting title. His overall average for the season was .324, sixth best in baseball, but his .335 NL average stood as the league’s best, so McGee was awarded the NL batting title. He played in his fourth World Series when Oakland faced off against Cincinnati, a series that ended in a Reds sweep of the A’s.

McGee inked a four-year, $13 million contract with the San Francisco Giants in December 1990. Playing just across the bay from where he grew up, he put up solid numbers with batting averages of .312 and .297 during his first two years. However, there was more criticism from fans and media. “He’s underrated and misunderstood,” said Dusty Baker, who took over as the Giants’ manager in 1993. I don’t think people here like the Cards, and they remember when he played there. Maybe it’s because he takes ugly swings. I don’t know.”51 Baker installed McGee in the leadoff spot to start the season, but through 17 games the veteran outfielder had yet to score a run and had an OBP of .299. He appeared in 34 of the first 37 games and was in the leadoff spot on 31 occasions. His OBP at that point was .327. On May 16, Baker moved McGee down to sixth in the order. The move seemed to propel McGee and the team. He hit .307 the rest of the season. Although the Giants won 103 games, they finished one game behind the Atlanta Braves and missed the playoffs.

McGee’s tenure with the Giants came to a premature end on June 7, 1994. Attempting to catch a long fly ball off the bat of Pittsburgh’s Orlando Merced, he tore his Achilles tendon when he collided with the outfield wall. He underwent surgery the following day and was unemployed after the season ended. After rehabbing throughout the winter and spring, McGee was looking for a job. At age 36, he was willing to accept a backup role with hopes of playing two more years.52 In late May 1995, the Boston Red Sox gave him a tryout and saw enough to offer him a minor league contract, signing him on June 6. “In the cage, anyway, he looks like the same Willie McGee with the bat,” said Boston assistant general manager Mike Port at that time.53 After spending time in extended spring training in Florida, McGee reported to Triple-A Pawtucket on June 29.54 In five games, he piled up ten hits in 21 at bats. When Mike Greenwell was placed on the disabled list, McGee took his place on the Boston roster. He started 42 games during the remainder of the season and hit .285.

After the 1995 season, the Cardinals hired Tony La Russa, who had managed McGee during his brief time in Oakland. McGee signed a minor league contract with St. Louis in December 1995. He served as a reserve outfielder and pinch hitter for the Cardinals from 1996 to 1999. Something quite remarkable happened during his second stint with St. Louis. Every time McGee came to the plate at Busch Stadium, he received a standing ovation from the fans. “The thing is,” said La Russa, “they cheer for him and he always seems to come through. There have been times when I’ve gotten goosebumps.”55 Indeed, McGee showed flashes of 1985 as he hit .358 in 151 at-bats at Busch Stadium in 1996. Ozzie Smith used this analogy to explain nightly cheers given to McGee: “You don’t miss your water until your well has run dry. We didn’t really appreciate him fully until he was gone.”56 McGee’s contributions helped propel St. Louis to the playoffs for the first time since 1987.

During McGee’s final seasons, he served as a veteran team leader, providing teammates with an ear, encouragement, and sage advice when necessary. “I’ve seen it here for four years now… no matter how he has felt, if any one of his teammates has had something he needed to talk about, Willie has sat down with that teammate and provided an hour. Not many guys in any walk of life have that kind of heart,” said La Russa in 1999. McGee played his last game on October 3, 1999 at age 40. He announced his retirement in November. For his career, McGee accumulated 2,254 hits, 79 home runs, 352 stolen bases, and had a batting average of .295 (.297 from the left side and .289 from the right).

April 9, 2000, was Willie McGee Day at Busch Stadium. The man of honor received a Ford F-150 as a retirement gift from his teammates. Jack Buck emceed the ceremony, and Herzog, Smith, Coleman, La Russa, Brock, and Bob Gibson all spoke. McGee appeared on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2004 and received 5% of the vote.57 He fell off the ballot the next year after failing to reach the 5% threshold.

Throughout his career, McGee spent off-seasons in the East Bay area near where he grew up. From buying uniforms for participants in the Police Athletic League to purchasing computers for a Richmond community center to speaking at elementary schools, McGee took opportunities to give back his community.58 He did the same in retirement. When he learned in 2004 that the Richmond school district had budget constraints that resulted in cuts to music teachers, librarians, counselors, and sports, McGee formed a charitable foundation to support youth sports and academic programs.59 He also kept busy in retirement taking his children to and from school and sports practices. Her served as an assistant baseball coach for Contra Costa College and coached his daughter’s softball team. After raising four daughters (Nanaushika, Jessica, Whitney, and Virginia), he and Viv adopted a son, William.

McGee served as a guest spring training instructor for the Cardinals for several seasons. In 2013, he was officially hired as special assistant to the general manager, working with the organization’s minor league outfielders. When the Cardinals held their inaugural fan vote for the team’s new Hall of Fame Museum in 2014, McGee was one of four players elected. He was enshrined in a ceremony on August 16, 2014.

In 2018, McGee was hired as a member of the Cardinals’ coaching staff. He primarily worked with the team’s outfielders but also helped with hitting, bunting, and base running. Starting in 2019, he focused more on outfield instruction. In 2020, McGee opted out of coaching due to health concerns during the Covid-19 pandemic. “I’m just happy to still be in the game, whether it’s on the field in junior college or Little League,” he said at the time of his hiring as a coach. “I’m fulfilled when I’m on that field.”60

Last revised: February 11, 2021

 

Acknowledgments

This biography was reviewed by Gregory H. Wolf and Norman Macht and fact-checked by Mark Sternman.

 

Sources

In addition to the sources cited in the Notes, the author relied on Baseball-Reference.com.

 

Notes

1 Todd Eschman, “A Conversation with Willie McGee,” Belleville News-Democrat. https://www.bnd.com/sports/mlb/st-louis-cardinals/article78108362.html, Accessed 10/21/20.

2 Vahe Gregorian, “The Humble Hero,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 16, 1998: 48.

3 Rick Hummel, “Staying Humble: Success Hasn’t Spoiled Willie McGee,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 15, 1982: 29.

4 Gregorian.

5 Gregorian.

6 Gregorian.

7 Gregorian.

8 Nick Peters, “McGee Hopes to Make Some Noise on the Field,” Sacramento Bee, April 8, 1991: 76.

9 “McGee Inspired by Ex-Ells Star,” Berkeley Gazette, June 9, 1976: 16.

10 “Ells’ McGee, BHS’ Wilson Top ACAL,” Berkeley Gazette, May 26, 1976: 12.

11 Steve Kennedy, “Five Locals All-NorCal,” Berkeley Gazette, June 17, 1976: 14.

12 Mike Eisenbath, “51 Things to Know About #51,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 7, 2000: 48.

13 Jerry Gandy, “McGee Picks Yankees Pinstripes to Books,” Berkeley Gazette, June 9, 1977: 24.

14 Hummel, “Staying Humble: Success Hasn’t Spoiled Willie McGee.”

15 Hummel, “Staying Humble: Success Hasn’t Spoiled Willie McGee.”

16 Rick Hummel, “McGee Shows Fast Bat from Right and Left,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, March 18, 1982: 51.

17 Telephone interview between Wayne Morgan and the author, October 20, 2020.

18 Tom Squires, “Sounds Top Orlando, 5-3,” Tennessean, May 9, 1980: 25.

19 Ray Boetel, “McGee Shows Speed in Baby Yanks Loss,” Fort Lauderdale News, June 30, 1978: 55.

20 Boetel, “McGee Shows Speed in Baby Yanks Loss.”

21 Rick Hummel, “McGee Boxing in his Down Time,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, May 3, 2020: 50.

22 Ray Boetel, “McGee’s Back in the FSL, But Not by Choice,” Fort Lauderdale News, June 19, 1979: 16.

23 Gregorian.

24 “Lauderdale Beats Miami,” Miami Herald, August 26, 1979: 248.

25 Eshman, “A Conversation with Willie McGee.”

26 “Wilborn Directs Sounds’ Sweep,” Tennessean, April 15, 1981:15.

27 “Sounds Fall to Jays 2-1,” Tennessean, July 26, 1981: 29.

28 Bud Burns, “McGee Making Most of His Chance,” Tennessean, June 9, 1982: 18.

29 Gregorian.

30 Peter Alfano, “Willie McGee: A Star Who Typifies His Team,” New York Times, September 30, 1985: C1

31 Hummel, “McGee Shows Fast Bat from Right and Left.”

32 Burns.

33 Burns.

34 “Cards Win 13th Flag with Rousing Victory,” Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune (Chillicothe, Missouri), October 11, 1982: 3.

35 Jeff Gordon, “In Good and Bad Times, McGee Always Persistent,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 31, 1990: 18.

36 “Minors to Series for McGee,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 11, 1982: 16.

37 “Minors to Series for McGee.”

38 Mike Smith, “Vuckovich’s Best Didn’t Allow for McGee Factor,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 16, 1982: 5.

39 Milton Richman, “Wonder-Worker Willie Has Those Brewers on Run,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 16, 1982: 7.

40 Ron Rapoport, “Willie’s Image Has a New Glow,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 16, 1982: 7.

41 Lyndal Scranton, “Cardinals Go Wild in Wet Celebration,” Springfield News-Leader (Springfield, Missouri), October 21, 1982: 21.

42 Rick Hummel, “McGee: A Leader in Action, Not Talk,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, July 4, 1985: 33.

43 Hummel, “McGee: A Leader in Action, Not Talk.”

44 Mike Eisenbath, “’To the Fans, I’m Here for You,” Willie McGee Says,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 10, 2000: 17.

45 “McGee Has Surgery on Knee,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 15, 1986: 41.

46 Rick Hummel, “McGee Out to Prove Himself Again,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, February 27, 1987: 35.

47 Gregorian.

48 Gregorian.

49 Kevin Horrigan, “Life Throat Willie McGee a Low Curve,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June 18, 1999: 22.

50 Rick Hummel, “McGee has Mixed Feelings,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 31, 1990: 15.

51 Rich Mellott, “Looking Good: Much-Maligned McGee Proves Critics Wrong,” Press Democrat (Santa Rosa, California), June 24, 1993: 23.

52 Nick Cafardo, “After His Tryout, McGee Hopes Things Will Work Out,” Boston Globe, May 31, 1995: 33.

53 Paul Doyle, “Red Sox Giving McGee a Long Look,” Hartford Courant, May 31, 1995: 111.

54 “Comeback Trail: Boston Brings Former Card McGee Back to Majors,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, July 6, 1995: 39.

55 Mike Eisenbath, “Lovefest: Fans Show Appreciation for McGee’s Return,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June 16, 1996: 44.

56 Eisenbath, “Lovefest: Fans Show Appreciation for McGee’s Return.”

57 Ronald Blum, “Boggs, Sandberg Elected to Hall,” Tallahassee Democrat, May 5, 2005: 14.

58 Jason B. Johnson, “Willie McGee Goes to Bat for Students,” San Francisco Chronicle, January 29, 2005. https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/OAKLAND-Willie-McGee-goes-to-bat-for-students-2734852.php, Accessed October 25, 2020.

59 Johnson.

60 Derrick Goold, “Oquendo, McGee Will be on Coaching Staff in 2018,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, October 24, 2017: 22.

Full Name

Willie Dean McGee

Born

November 2, 1958 at San Francisco, CA (USA)

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