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Branch Rickey wanted to trade for Davey Johnson in 1964

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Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson strolled into his pre-game meeting with reporters on Friday with a big smile on his face.

Apparently Johnson had just been informed that Hall of Fame baseball executive Branch Rickey had once filed a scouting report recommending that the Dodgers acquire Johnson in any trade with the Orioles. 

He was thrilled to learn he had caught the eye of the same man who’d signed Jackie Robinson. 

“I’m in high cotton,” Johnson quipped, referencing a lesser-known phrase that meant to indicate “times are good.”

You can see Rickey’s scouting report on Johnson in the accompanying photo. Here’s what it said:

Johnson, Dave (Rochester infielder)

Tall, slim, right hander now playing second base. 21 years old. First year player. Good looking fielder. Good batting form. A major league possibility. Try to include him in any possible deal with Baltimore.

Branch Rickey

Obviously, the Orioles never did do a deal with the Dodgers that included Johnson. He went on to become a four-time All-Star, three-time Gold Glove winner and won two World Series rings. 

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About the Author
Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals and comes to The Washington Times from the Cape Cod Times and after stints with and the Amsterdam (N.Y.) Recorder. A Massachusetts native and 2008 graduate of Boston University, Amanda can be reached at and you can follow her on Twitter @acomak.

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