Willie Crawford played 14 seasons in the Major Leagues and 12 of them with the Los Angeles Dodgers. A high school standout in baseball, football, and track, Crawford was signed two days after graduation by Tom Lasorda, who was a Dodger scout at the time. All 20 Major League teams were interested in the left-handed hitting Crawford, but the Los Angeles native signed with this hometown Dodgers for a $100,000 bonus.
Although he never became the superstar the Dodgers hoped he would be, Crawford hit very well against right-handed pitching and was cast as a platoon player during his tenure. His finest season came in 1973 in which Crawford hit .295 with 14 home runs and 66 RBI; he hit .325 against righties while batting .205 against lefties in that season. Crawford played his final two seasons, through a number of trades, with the Cardinals, Astros, and A's. The Dodgers signed Crawford for spring training in 1978, but was released before the regular season began.
Crawford spent 1978 and 1979 playing in the Mexican League before retiring from baseball at age 32.
About This Card
Willie Crawford struggled against left-handed pitching throughout most of his career hitting 50 points higher against righties: .275 vs. righties and .225 vs. lefties. However, his Topps card highlights the one season in which Crawford hit much significantly better against left-handers. In 1971, Crawford his .377 against lefties and .263 against righties.