Al Simmons

Aloysius Harry Simmons (May 22, 1902 – May 26, 1956), born Alois Szymanski,[1] was an American professional baseball player. Nicknamed "Bucketfoot Al", he played for two decades in Major League Baseball (MLB) as an outfielder and had his best years with Connie Mack's Philadelphia Athletics during the late 1920s and early 1930s, winning two World Series with Philadelphia. Simmons also played for the Chicago White Sox, Detroit Tigers, Washington Senators, Boston Braves, Cincinnati Reds and Boston Red Sox. After his playing career ended, Simmons served as a coach for the Athletics and Cleveland Indians. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953.

Al Simmons
Al Simmons (1937)
Outfielder
Born: May 22, 1902
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Died: May 26, 1956 (aged 54)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 15, 1924, for the Philadelphia Athletics
Last MLB appearance
July 1, 1944, for the Philadelphia Athletics
MLB statistics
Batting average.334
Hits2,927
Home runs307
Runs batted in1,828
Teams
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction1953
Vote75.4% (seventh ballot)

Early life

Simmons was born in Milwaukee and grew up as a fan of the Philadelphia Athletics. In the fourth grade, he received a spanking from his father for insisting that he wanted to play professional baseball. When he persisted in asserting his desire to be a baseball player, his father replied that he had better become a good player. Simmons was known by his birth last name (Szymanski) until he was playing for a local minor league team and he was tired of hearing people mispronounce it. He saw an advertisement for a company named Simmons Hardware and decided to take on the last name of Simmons.[2]

Playing career

Philadelphia Athletics (1924–1932)

In 1925, his second season with Philadelphia, Simmons led the AL with 253 hits with a .387 batting average, 24 home runs and 129 runs batted in (RBI). He scored 122 runs, hit 43 doubles, and finished with a .599 slugging percentage. His 85 multi-hit games constitute a single-season MLB record.[3] He earned the second-most votes for the league's Most Valuable Player Award. In the following three seasons, he hit .341, .392 and .351 and drove in 110, 108 and 107 runs in those respective years, while finishing fifth in 1926 MVP voting and fourth in 1927.

Simmons led the A's to the AL pennant in 1929 as Philadelphia went 104–46, finishing 18 games ahead of the New York Yankees. The A's went on to defeat the Chicago Cubs in five games to win the World Series. That season he hit .365 with 34 home runs and led the AL with 157 RBI. He also scored 114 runs, had 212 hits with 41 doubles and a .642 slugging percentage. In his first World Series Simmons batted .300 with 2 home runs, 5 RBIs and scored 6 runs.

Simmons' best year as a player was in 1930, when he won his first of successive batting titles, hitting .381 with 36 home runs, 211 hits, 41 doubles and 16 triples. He had a slugging percentage of .708, drove in 165 runs and scored 152 runs in 138 games. The A's won the AL pennant again, going 102–52, and defeated the St. Louis Cardinals to win back-to-back World Series titles. In that World Series, Simmons batted .364 with 2 home runs, 4 RBI with a .727 slugging percentage.

In 1931, the A's won their third straight AL pennant, by 13.5 games over the Yankees, going 107–45. Simmons won his second batting title, hitting .390 with 22 home runs, 128 RBI, 100 runs scored, 200 hits, 37 doubles, 13 triples and a .641 slugging percentage while playing in only 128 games. He finished third in AL MVP voting behind his MVP teammate Lefty Grove and the Yankees' Lou Gehrig. The A's were upset in their quest for a third consecutive World Series title, losing the World Series in seven games to the Cardinals. Simmons hit .333 with 2 home runs and 8 RBI in the series.

In a final season with Philadelphia, Simmons led the AL with 216 hits. He batted .322, with 35 home runs, 151 RBIs and 144 runs scored in 1932. Simmons finished his Philadelphia Athletics tenure with a .356 batting average, 209 home runs, 1,179 RBI and 969 runs scored in 1,290 games. He drove in 100+ runs in all nine seasons and scored 100 or more runs in five seasons. In three World Series appearances for the A's, Simmons hit .333 with 6 home runs, 17 RBI and 15 runs scored in 18 games.

Later career (1933–1944)

AlSimmonsGoudeycard
1933 baseball card of Simmons

In late September 1932 the Athletics sold Simmons, Mule Haas and Jimmy Dykes to the Chicago White Sox for cash. The amount of the purchase was not disclosed at the time the sale was reported, though it was said to be the largest cash purchase ever made by the White Sox and possibly the largest purchase in AL history. Newspaper reports speculated that Athletics owner Connie Mack might be breaking apart the Athletics team that had been so successful between 1929 and 1931.[4]

During his first season in Chicago, Simmons batted .331 with 14 home runs, 119 RBI and 200 hits. In 1934 he batted .344 with 18 home runs, 104 RBI, 102 runs scored and 192 hits in 138 games. After a disappointing final season with the White Sox which saw Simmons bat just. 267 with 16 home runs and 79 RBI in 128 games (first time in his 11-year career he did not reach .300+ & 100 RBI) he rebounded by hitting .327 with 13 home runs, 112 RBI and 96 runs scored in 1936 for the Detroit Tigers.

In 1937 he struggled again, this time with the Washington Senators, batting just .279 with 8 home runs and 84 RBIs in 103 games. He rebounded with a stellar season in 1938, batting .302 with 21 home runs and 95 RBI in just 125 games for Washington. His 21 home runs that year gave Simmons the distinction of being the first player to hit 20 home runs in a year for the Senators.

Simmons was purchased from the Senators by the Boston Bees in 1939. The purchase price was not immediately revealed, though Simmons was reported as not getting along with Senators owner Clark Griffith.[5] Simmons played in the major leagues until 1944.

Overview

Simmons was one of the best hitters in MLB history. He had a career batting average of .334. He hit .340 or better in eight different seasons, with four seasons of better than .380. He recorded a .300 batting average and 100 or more RBI in his first 11 major league seasons.

Simmons accumulated 1,500 hits in 1,040 games and 2,000 hits in 1,393 games, which remains the shortest number of games needed to attain both marks in major league history. He compiled 200 hits or better in a season six times, with five of those being consecutive (1929–33), and had 199 and 192 hits in 1926 and 1934. He compiled more hits than any right-handed batter in AL history until surpassed by Al Kaline. Simmons recorded 8 five-hit games and 52 four-hit games in the majors.

Simmons hit 307 career home runs, finishing in the top six in AL in home runs for seven consecutive seasons (1925–32). In 19 World Series games, he hit .329 with 6 home runs, 17 RBI, 15 runs scored and .658 slugging percentage. He was also a fine outfielder in his era, recording a career .982 fielding percentage.

Simmons was nicknamed "Bucketfoot Al" because he strode toward third base when hitting.[6]

Later life and legacy

After his playing days ended, Simmons served as a coach for Mack's Athletics (1945–49) and the Cleveland Indians (1950). In early April 1951, Simmons announced that he was dealing with an undisclosed illness and that he was stepping down as a coach of the Indians. While Cleveland manager Al López encouraged Simmons to think about his decision, Simmons said that he could no longer help the team.[7] Simmons died on May 26, 1956. He had collapsed on a sidewalk near the Milwaukee Athletic Club and was thought to have suffered a heart attack. He was pronounced dead at a hospital a short time later.[8] He was buried at St. Adalbert's Cemetery in Milwaukee.

Simmons was elected to the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame in 1951, the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953, and the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame in 1975.[9] In a 1976 Esquire magazine article, sportswriter Harry Stein published an "All Time All-Star Argument Starter", consisting of five ethnic baseball teams. Simmons was the right fielder on Stein's Polish team. In 1999, Simmons ranked number 43 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and was a nominee for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team. In the 2001 book The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, Bill James ranked Simmons as the 71st greatest baseball player of all-time and the 7th greatest MLB left fielder of all-time.

See also

References

  1. ^ Al Simmons at baseball-reference.com, accessed January 19, 2011.
  2. ^ "Szymanski, Aloysius Harry (Al Simmons)". Pennsylvania Center for the Book. Archived from the original on 2013-05-15. Retrieved December 28, 2014.
  3. ^ "Batting Game Finder, From 1913 to 2017, (requiring H>=2)". Baseball Reference. Retrieved August 1, 2017.
  4. ^ "Athletics sell three big stars to Chicago Sox". The Tuscaloosa News. September 30, 1932. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
  5. ^ "Al Simmons sold to the Boston Bees". The Milwaukee Journal. December 29, 1938. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
  6. ^ Al Simmons. Article by Fred Stein. SABR Biography Project. Retrieved on March 7, 2018.
  7. ^ "Illness forces Simmons to quit as Indian coach". Toledo Blade. April 4, 1951. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
  8. ^ "Al Simmons left enviable record". The Miami News. May 27, 1956. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
  9. ^ Al Simmons « National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame and Museum Archived 2013-09-28 at the Wayback Machine

External links

1924 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1924 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 5th in the American League with a record of 71 wins and 81 losses.

1928 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1928 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 2nd in the American League with a record of 98 wins and 55 losses. The team featured seven eventual Hall-of-Fame players: Ty Cobb, Mickey Cochrane, Eddie Collins, Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove, Al Simmons, and Tris Speaker.

1929 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1929 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 1st in the American League with a record of 104 wins and 46 losses. After finishing in second place to the New York Yankees in 1927 and 1928, the club won the 1929 pennant by a large 18-game margin. The club went on to win the World Series over the NL champion Chicago Cubs, four games to one.

1932 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1932 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing second in the American League with a record of 94 wins and 60 losses. The team finished 13 games behind the New York Yankees, breaking their streak of three straight AL championships.

1934 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

The 1934 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the second playing of the mid-summer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 10 at the Polo Grounds in Manhattan, the home of the New York Giants of the National League. The game resulted in the American League defeating the National League 9–7.

The game is well known among baseball historians for the performance of NL starting pitcher Carl Hubbell. After allowing the first two batters to reach base on a single and a base on balls, Hubbell struck out five of the game's best hitters – Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons and Joe Cronin – in succession, setting a longstanding All-Star Game record for consecutive strikeouts.

1936 Detroit Tigers season

The 1936 Detroit Tigers season was a season in American baseball. The team finished second in the American League with a record of 83–71, 19½ games behind the New York Yankees.

1937 Washington Senators season

The 1937 Washington Senators won 73 games, lost 80, and finished in sixth place in the American League. They were managed by Bucky Harris and played home games at Griffith Stadium.

1939 Boston Bees season

The 1939 Boston Bees season was the 69th season of the franchise.

1940 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1940 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 8th in the American League with a record of 54 wins and 100 losses.

1944 Philadelphia Athletics season

The 1944 Philadelphia Athletics season involved the A's finishing 5th in the American League with a record of 72 wins and 82 losses.

Al Simmons (musician)

Albert William "Al" Simmons, (born September 5, 1948) is a Canadian children's performer from Anola, Manitoba. He began performing in the 1970s and later made guest appearances on Fred Penner's television show as well as Sesame Street. He tours regularly across Canada and the United States. He has recorded several albums for children and won a Juno Award in 1996.

Simmons worked as a gas jockey, steelworker and clerk before becoming an entertainer. He started performing in amateur shows and volunteering his services for benefit concerts. He formed a comedy/rock band called Out to Lunch and then a comedy/folk band, Kornstalk, before venturing out on his own again as a musician and prop comic. His best-known act was the Human Juke Box: "two bits a laff."

Simmons has released three CDs, Something's Fishy at Camp Wiganishie, Celery Stalks at Midnight, and The Truck I Bought From Moe, each of which won Parents' Choice honours and were nominated for Juno awards. Celery Stalks, an ode to vaudeville, won the 1996 Juno Award for Best Children's Album. His illustrated children's book Counting Feathers was short-listed for the McNally-Robinson Book of the Year in 1997. He received a Cable Ace Award nomination for his music video "I Collect Rocks," which is also the title track of his DVD. He also voiced the Genie Award-winning 1985 animated short, Get a Job.

Al married Barbara Freundl in 1976. They have three sons, Karl, Will, and Brad.

Chapel (comics)

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Cogliostro

Cogliostro (; also Cog) is a fictional character in Todd McFarlane's Spawn comic series. Cogliostro was created in 1993 by author Neil Gaiman and artist Todd McFarlane and introduced in Spawn issue #9.

List of Oakland Athletics team records

The Oakland Athletics are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in Oakland, California. The Athletics formed in 1901 as the Philadelphia Athletics; after moving to Kansas City for 12 years, the Athletics relocated to Oakland in 1969. Through 2014, the Athletics have played 17,757 games, winning 8,622, losing 9,048, and tying 87, for a winning percentage of approximately .488. This list documents the superlative records and accomplishments of team members during their tenures as Athletics.

Eddie Plank holds the most franchise records as of the end of the 2014 season, with ten, including the most career wins, losses and hit batsmen. He is followed by Jimmie Foxx, who holds nine records, including the best career on-base percentage and the single-season home runs record, as well as Al Simmons, who holds the single season hit and RBI records.Four Athletics hold Major League records. Offensively, Rickey Henderson holds the single-season modern day steals record, recording 130 over 149 games played during the 1982 season. Frankie Hayes is tied for the single-game doubles record, recording four in a game on July 25, 1936. Eddie Collins stole six bases twice in September 1912; his mark would later be tied by Otis Nixon, Eric Young and Carl Crawford. Defensively, Bruno Haas, who spent his only professional season with the Athletics, holds the single game walks allowed record, pitching 16 in his Major League debut.

List of Spawn characters

This is a partial list of characters from the Image comic book Spawn and its many spin-offs.

Mammon (comics)

Mammon () is a fictional supervillain from the comic book Spawn. He is Spawn's former ally and is the second primary antagonist, having replaced Malebolgia in that role until #184. He was eventually replaced by Satan as the primary antagonist.

Michael Jai White

Michael Jai White (born November 10, 1967) is an American actor, director, and martial artist. He is the first African American to portray a major comic book superhero in a major motion picture, having starred as Al Simmons, the protagonist in the 1997 film Spawn. White appeared as Marcus Williams in the Tyler Perry films Why Did I Get Married? and Why Did I Get Married Too?, and starred as the character on the TBS/OWN comedy-drama television series Tyler Perry's For Better or Worse. White portrayed Jax Briggs in Mortal Kombat: Legacy. He portrayed boxer Mike Tyson in the 1995 HBO television movie Tyson. He also played the title role in the blaxploitation parody film Black Dynamite, as well as the animated series of the same name.

Nyx (Image Comics)

Nyx is a comic book character created by Brian Holguin who appears in the Spawn comic book series as an ally of Al Simmons (Spawn). She first appears in Spawn #122. She reappears in issue #169 and plays a major role in subsequent issues, mainly as Spawn's sidekick.

Oakland Athletics award winners and league leaders

This is a list of award winners and league leaders for the Oakland Athletics professional baseball franchise.

The team was first known as the Philadelphia Athletics from 1901 to 1954 and then as the Kansas City Athletics from 1955 to 1967.

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