William Frederick "Woody" Woodward (b. September 23, 1942) is a former professional baseball player, college baseball coach, and general manager. He played all or part of nine seasons in Major League Baseball, primarily as a shortstop, but is better known for his tenure as general manager of the Seattle Mariners.
Woodward played baseball at Coral Gables Senior High School and led the team to the 1960 Class AA state title. He attended Florida State University, where he played for the Florida State Seminoles baseball team. In 1963 he was named third-team All-American and was named to the College World Series all-tournament squad.
On July 10, 1970, Woodward hit his only major league home run in 2,423 plate appearances, a two-run shot off Ron Reed against the Atlanta Braves. Afterwards Woodward was quoted as saying, "If I hit one home run per every seven seasons, it will take me 4,998 seasons to catch Babe Ruth." He played in four games of the 1970 World Series, which the Reds lost to the Baltimore Orioles in five games, with Woodward totaling one hit in five at bats.
Woodward was involved in a bizarre incident on September 4, 1971. During a game against the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium, a sack of flour fell out of the sky and landed approximately 10 feet from where Woodward was standing.
After working as an assistant general manager for both the Cincinnati Reds and New York Yankees, Woodward was named the general manager of the New York Yankees in October 1986. His resignation at the end of the 1987 season lead to a flurry of moves as then-manager Lou Piniella was promoted to general manager, and (for the fifth time) Billy Martin was named Yankees manager.
The Philadelphia Phillies hired Woodward as general manager in October 1987, and fired him in June 1988.
The next month, in July 1988, he became the general manager of the Seattle Mariners, working there until his retirement at the end of 1999. During his tenure, the Mariners made the playoffs in 1995 and 1997. His draft picks included Alex Rodriguez, Jason Varitek, Derek Lowe, Bret Boone and Raúl Ibañez. Perhaps his most notable trade was in 1989, acquiring Randy Johnson from the Montreal Expos (or trading away one of the greatest hitters in history, David Ortiz after being told not to trade him). In January 2009 the Mariners hired him to work as a part-time scout.
MLB debut – September 9, Milwaukee Braves
Last MLB appearance – September 28, 1971, for the Cincinnati Reds
Batting average – .236
Home runs – 1
RBI – 148
Milwaukee / Atlanta Braves (1963–1968)
Cincinnati Reds (1968–1971)
Link to all of his issued baseball cards – www.tradingcarddb.com/Person.cfm/pid/6401/col/1/yea/0/Woo…
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