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Oliva added 16 home runs, 98 runs batted in, and 107 runs.He led the AL in hits (185), runs created (108), sacrifice flies (10), and batting average (.321), good for a second-place finish in MVP voting to teammate and Twins sparkplug, Zoilo Versalles.Compiling one of the great freshman campaigns in baseball history, Oliva was selected as a near-unanimous 1964 American League (AL) Rookie of the Year, receiving 19 of 20 first-place votes.
While there, he became friends with teammate, and fellow Cuban, shortstop Zoilo Versalles, who quickly became convinced that Oliva was "the new Ty Cobb", citing their similarities in hitting ability, speed, and arm strength.
And also loved seeing the latter (a favorite word) clued with another fave: [Debacle].
Evocative fives ELFIN [Spritelike], FELLA [Guy, slangily], CYCLE [Ride a bike] and “HAPPY” [Grammy-winning music video by Pharrell Williams]? Clue/fill combo that had me scratching my head most? I’ll just cut to the chase and say that this is about Frank Lloyd Wright and architectural wings and not about anything having to do with Orville and Wilbur’s flying machines.
Due to a paperwork switch at Oliva's arrival in the US to reflect the name and birthdate of his younger brother Pedro Jr.(born 1941) in order to appear younger to Major League scouts, many newspapers reported the 21-year-old Tony as his 18-year-old sibling The Twins assigned Oliva to the class-D Wytheville Twins in the Appalachian League, where he played in 64 games and led the league with a .410 batting average, but had a low fielding percentage of .854.
After finishing second to Orlando Cepeda in batting average in the Puerto Rico leagues in winter ball, Oliva was sent to the single-A Charlotte in the South Atlantic League, where he played 127 games and hit .350 with 17 home runs and 93 RBIs.Oliva was the 1964 American League Rookie of the Year.