Bill Fleming

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Leslie Fletcherd Fleming

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Biographical Information[edit]

Bill Fleming had some success as a war-time pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, and had a long minor league career.

He started in the minors in 1936 with the Muskogee Tigers, going 12-11. Although he was briefly in the Pacific Coast League in both 1937 and 1938, he was mostly in the Western International League, first with the Vancouver Maple Leafs, going 11-6, and then with the Bellingham Chinooks, going 20-11. He was in the PCL in both 1939 and 1940 with the Hollywood Stars, going first 12-16 and then 17-12.

He originally came to the majors with the Boston Red Sox in 1940 and 1941, when Ted Williams and Dom DiMaggio were young outfielders on the team. Fleming was a bit older, 26 in 1940. His ERA in 1940 was about the same as the team ERA, and in 1941 his ERA was a bit better than the team ERA.

He was also back in the minors for part of 1941, going 6-6 with the Louisville Colonels.

Purchased by the Cubs, he went 5-6 in 1942, starting 14 of his 31 appearances. His ERA was a respectable 3.01. He was in only 11 games in 1943, and was also in the minors with the Milwaukee Brewers, going 8-6. He came back to the Cubs in 1944 to go 9-10 with an ERA of 3.13.

He did not appear in the majors in 1945, entering the Army in January and being discharged in December, and in 1946 came back for just 14 games. In the minors for part of 1946 with the Los Angeles Angels, he went 11-6.

He played in the PCL for years, going from Los Angeles to the Portland Beavers during the 1948 season. Starting in 1948, he became mostly a reliever, getting 10 saves in 1948 and 8 saves in 1950. He was retired in 1952, but came back in 1953 for 5 innings, giving up no earned runs and getting a win.

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