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Dontrelle Willis is a 23 year old, 6’5”-232 lb starting pitcher for the Marlins.We spoke to him just before he became the 13th African American to ever win  20 games in a season.  He was born in Oakland, Ca. and now lives in Aventura.  He was always laughing and smiling while we spoke and complimented us by telling us that our questions were great after almost every one. 


What was your most exciting moment as a kid?

When I was 12, my Mom scraped up all the money she could save and bought me a TPX bat and I tell you what… I might still have this bat.  It’s beat up now but I’ll never forget it. I slept with that bat.  It was the best Christmas present, the only Christmas present I got that year.  The whole neighborhood used that bat.  It was the only bat in the neighborhood.  Even after we got older in high school we still used it.  We popped the cap and put tennis balls in it so we could hit the balls farther. That was the greatest gift because she went out of her way and did the best she could to be able to get me something nice for Christmas.


We heard your mother doesn’t come to any of your games or even watch them.  Can you tell us more about that?

She’s like a nervous wreck.  To be honest ever since  I was younger than you guys she could never come watch my little league games. I mean if you can’t watch me play little league you’re definitely not going to be able to watch me play on national tv.  She’s working on that. She’s getting better.




You have a great smile. What puts the biggest smile on your face?

Kids, kids.  Because I am a kid.  I’m about 5 minutes older than you guys.  Seeing kids come to the park and just enjoying this.  I love kids smiling all the time. It’s a beautiful thing.








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