Former major leaguer Champ Summers dies in Florida

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OCALA, Fla. (AP) -- Former Major League Baseball player John "Champ" Summers has died in north Florida. He was 66.

Summers' wife, Joy, says he passed away Thursday after a 2 1/2-year battle with kidney cancer.

Starting in 1974, Summers played 10 seasons in the majors for six different teams.

His wife said Thursday "his favorite team was Detroit. He stayed there the longest, and he loved the fans."

Besides playing for the Tigers, Summers also played for the Oakland Athletics, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres. He later spent time as a hitting coach for the New York Yankees.

Summers finished his MLB career with a .255 batting average, 54 home runs and 218 RBIs.