Reggie Willits

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Reggie Gene Willits

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Biographical information[edit]

Reggie Willits played six seasons in the majors, all with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. A speedy outfielder, he never hit a home run in the majors.

He was drafted by the Anaheim Angels in the 7th round of the 2003 amateur draft after leading the Big 12 Conference with 37 steals; he hit .379 that year for the University of Oklahoma. He was signed by scout Kevin Ham and began his pro career that summer.

Willits hit .300/.410/.448 for the 2003 Provo Angels, leading the team with 14 SB in 18 tries. Willits jumped from rookie ball to the high-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes in 2004, hitting .285/.374/.365, finishing second on the team with 45 SB in 60 attempts (teammate Erick Aybar led the league with 51). He led California League outfielders with 322 putouts. For the AA Arkansas Travelers in 2005, Willits hit .304/.377/.388, again finishing second on the team to Aybar, this time with 40 SB in 54 attempts.

In 2006, Reggie played for the Salt Lake Bees, batting .327/.448/.426 with 31 steals (albeit in 46 tries). He played 1 game for the Angels in April and then returned in July for 4 games before coming up for good in mid-August. Through August 20th, his batting line read .200/.259/.240 for the Anaheim team, but he finished much stronger at .267/.411/.289.

In 2007, he started quickly, hitting .341/.429/.376 through the middle of May. He ended up getting the most major league playing time of his career that season, with 136 games. He hit .293 and scored 74 runs.

In 2018, he was named first-base coach for the New York Yankees under new manager Aaron Boone. He had been a minor league outfield and baserunning instructor in the Yankees' chain before his appointment.

Willits is only the second major leaguer born in Chickasha, OK. The first was Terry Humphrey, who also played for the Angels. His sister, Wendi Willits, played in the WNBA [1].

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