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From BR Bullpen
Willie Simms (Jeep, Simmy, Bill)
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 170 lb.
Simms broke in with the Monroe Monarchs in 1934. He spent two years with the Cincinnati Tigers. In 1937, he formed a speedy outfield with Henry Milton and Eddie Dwight, leading the group with a .318 average. He went 0 for 9 in exhibitions that fall against Bob Feller, Lou Fette, Lon Warneke, Mike Ryba, Mace Brown and Jim Weaver. Simms split 1938 between Kansas City and the Chicago American Giants.
Bill fell to .224 with the American Giants in 1939 and .206 in 1940. Returning to the Monarchs in 1941, Willie fell to .179 as a starter alongside Ted Strong and Willard Brown. In exhibitions, he went 0 for 4 against Feller and Ken Heintzelman.
In 1942, Simms backed up Brown, Strong and Newt Allen in the outfield. In the 1942 Colored World Series, though, he started and batted .286/.318/.381 with four runs and four RBI in a four-game sweep of the Homestead Grays (Allen had moved to third base and Herb Cyrus to the bench). In a fall exhibition in front of 29,000 at Wrigley Field, he hit leadoff and played left for Kansas City. He went 2 for 5 against Dizzy Dean, Johnny Grodzicki and Al Piechota that day.