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Lou Manzo

Negro League baseball player, was born in Remington, Virginia, of parents whose names and occupations are unknown. As a teenager he played baseball on sandlots in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, D.C. As he matured, Wilson grew into a squat five feet eight inches, weighing 185 pounds. He had wide shoulders that shrank to a small waist—reminiscent of a smaller but similarly proportioned Babe Ruth. Although Wilson was pigeon-toed and had bowed legs, he possessed great speed. But before he could sign professionally with a Negro League team, he was drafted into the U.S. military near the end of World War I. He served as a corporal in Company D, 417th Service Battalion, Quartermaster Corps.

Upon discharge, Wilson signed with the Baltimore Black Sox in 1922. As Wilson laced line drives off the fence during his Black Sox tryout, Negro League great Satchel Paige gave him ...