The North Bend Eagle

 
Video of the Baltimore Oriole recognizing the 1966 world champions on July 8, 2016. North Bender Eddie Watt, No. 39, is introduced at the 5:28 mark.

Watt, Orioles celebrate '66 Series win

by Nathan Arneal
Published 7/20/16

Eddie Watt

On July 8, the public address announcer at Oriole Park in Camden Yards was booming out player introductions to a crowd of 44,000 fans.

Even though these players wouldn’t play a single out of that day’s game, the Baltimore crowd gave them a rousing ovation. Fifty years earlier these 13 players helped bring Baltimore its first World Series title.

Among the players introduced was North Bend’s own Eddie Watt.

Watt, who was a 25-year-old rookie on that 1966 team, played a key role on the championship team, splitting time as a starter and relief pitcher. He appeared in 43 games, compiling a 9-7 record and four saves.

Watt said he wasn’t scheduled to play for Baltimore that season. He was expecting to play triple-A ball in Rochester, New York, before making the move to the bigs in ‘67.

Eddie Watt
Watt

But that offseason, Baltimore was part of a three-way trade that altered the course of the franchise by bringing Frank Robinson to town.

“He was very close to the missing piece that the Orioles needed to become a pennant winning club,” Watt said. “It was the greatest thing to happen to me.”
In order to make the trade happen, the Orioles shipped off a good chunk of their pitching staff from the 1965 team. Watt was one of the players moved up to fill the openings suddenly available in the Baltimore bullpen.

“I had a very, very good spring,” Watt said. “I was very fortunate to be put in that situation.”

He earned a save on opening day, and his play over the first month of the season would secure his spot in the major leagues for the next nine years.

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