By JERRY TAPP
When Ted Simmons is inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame later this year, he will become the seventh player to wear a Brewers jersey to become a Hall of Famer. The other Hall of Fame players with ties to the Brewers are Hank Aaron, Rollie Fingers, Trevor Hoffman, Paul Molitor, Don Sutton and Robin Yount.
Simmons was a member of the Milwaukee Brewers from 1981-85. He played in 665 games for the Brew Crew, collecting 666 hits, 66 HR, 394 RBI and batting .262.
Since he wore number 23 throughout his playing days, here are 23 stats you may not know about Simmons and his Hall of Fame career.
- Simmons ended his career with 2,472 hits and 248 home runs. He is one of 65 players in MLB history to have 2,400 hits and 240 HRs in a career. Of those 65 players, Simmons becomes the 39th to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
- He played 21 seasons in the majors, 13 with St. Louis, five with the Brewers and three with Atlanta.
- He was born in Highland Park, Michigan. Of all players born in Michigan who played in the majors, Simmons ranks second in career hits with 2,472 (behind fellow Hall of Famer Charlie Gehringer) and third in home runs with 248, behind Kirk Gibson and John Mayberry who each hit 255. He ranks first on the list of Michigan-born ballplayers in MLB career games played with 2,456.
- Simmons was an eight-time All-Star. He was 2-for-10 in those games with one RBI.
- Seven times in his career he finished in the Top 20 in league MVP voting. His highest finish was sixth in the voting for the 1975 National League MVP.
- Simmons had 2,472 career hits, but did not have a season where he hit 200. The most hits he had in a season were 193 in 1975 with the Cardinals.
- His career high for home runs was 26 in 1979 with the Cards. His second-best year was 23 he hit for the Brewers in 1982.
- The best year for RBIs was in 1983 when Simmons drove in 108 with the Brewers. Three times in his career he had 100 or more RBIs in a season.
- Simmons twice led the league in intentional walks … in 1976 and 1977 with the Cards.
- He never played in a post-season game during his career with the Cardinals. He appeared in 17 post-season games with the Brewers in 1981 and 1982.
- The only positions Simmons did not play in his MLB career were pitcher, second base, shortstop and centerfield.
- He made 233 pinch-hit appearances, but was never a pinch-runner in a game.
- Simmons had 2,472 hits in 2,456 career MLB games. Of all players who played in 2,400 or more career games in the majors, Simmons is one of only 65 players to have more hits than games played.
- Simmons played 1,218 home games and 1,238 away games in his career. He had more HRs (132-116) in road games and had a higher batting average (.291-.279) in road games.
- Simmons highest monthly career batting average was in July. He hit .298 in July during his 21-year career.
- When his team won, Simmons’ batting average was .338. When his team lost, his career average was .233.
- He batted .301 in extra innings.
- The most career homers he hit versus one team were 23 each against the Pirates and Cubs.
- Simmons batted .300 or better in seven seasons. He was one of 157 players to accomplish that in a career. Cap Anson tops the list with 24 seasons with a batting average of .300 or better. Ty Cobb is second with 21 seasons at .300 or better.
- Most of Simmons plate appearances took place when he was batting clean-up. Of his 9,685 career plate appearances, Simmons had 5,296 of them from the fourth spot in the batting order.
- Simmons batted only .216 in his first season with the Brewers (1981). He batted .214 in five games in 1969 and .196 in his final season (1988 with the Braves), the lowest batting average seasons in his career.
- A switch-hitter, he hit a HR from both sides of the plate in a game three times.
- Simmons was first eligible for the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994. He received less than 5% of the votes that year and was taken off the ballot. He was eventually voted in this year by the Veterans Committee.
Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp