I know it’s all about winning. And don’t get me wrong I enjoyed the 2005 World Championship season as much as the next Sox fan. But there is something to be said for being a kid and rooting for your team, win or lose, it was a good day.

I went to my first ballgame the Boys Benefit game played between the White Sox & Cubs at Milwaukee’s County Stadium in 1968. In LF for the White Sox was a hustling youngster that earned a special place in my heart because of his smile, hustle, & love for the game. I’m talking about Walt “No-Neck” Williams!

Walt was selected off waivers by the St. Louis Cardinals from the Houston Colt 45’s (he’d batted .000 in nine at bats with Houston). Things could only get better for the 5’6″ 195 pound outfielder, and soon they would when he was traded to the White Sox from the Cardinals along with pitcher Don Dennis in exchange for Johnny Romano and Lee White.

In 1969 “No-Neck” won the regular rightfield job with the White Sox, along with the hearts of their fans. The 25 year old Williams batted a team high .304, with 22 doubles, 1 triple, & 3 HRs, in 471 at bats. Walt would run out EVERYTHING, and always run onto & off of the field! I can still see the smile he brought to my father’s face, as he’d exclaim, “NOW THAT’S A BALLPLAYER!”

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