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Maury Wills Signs ’63 Contract With Dodgers

Feb. 8, 1963 - Shortstop Maury Wills, who set a stolen-base record of 104 and was named most valuable player in the National League last season, signed a $45,000 contract for 1963 with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Wills, 30 years old, was given a $15,000 pay raise over 1962 and joined Don Drysdale as the highest paid of all the playing Dodgers. It was a sharp contrast to the $11,000 Wills received in 1960, his first full year as a Dodger regular. Wills’ 104 stolen bags in 1962 gave him the league lead for the third straight year. He surpassed Ty Cobb’s record of 96. Wills batted .299 for the 1962 season, his best as a Dodger. Wills said today the failure of the Dodgers to win the pennant cost him “somewhere around $60,000” in fringe benefits, but he still was able to capitalize this off-season on his personal accomplishments. He won the $10,000 diamond-studded Hickock belt award, was given an imported sports car, and cashed in on personal endorsements not to mention his lucrative salary as part of the Dodgers’ nightclub act that played four weeks in Las Vegas and will reopen for an 11-day stand in Miami Beach on Feb. 14.

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