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Billy Herman

Profiles of Valor

Born in Indiana in July of 1909, William Jennings Bryan Herman, better known as Billy, led a life that included an exceptional baseball career and service to his country. His legacy lives on through his baseball statistics and his dedication and commitment to this country.

 

Primarily a second basemen, Herman was one of the most reliable defenders and one of the most consistent contact hitters of his generation. Over the course of a career that began in 1931 and ended in 1947, Herman played for the Chicago Cubs, Brooklyn Dodgers, Boston Braves, and Pittsburgh Pirates. He was voted an All-Star ten times over the course of his career, while posting a career batting average of .304 while driving in 839 runs. He was responsible for helping the Chicago Cubs reach the National League Pennant in 1935.

Additionally, Herman still holds a number of defensive records. His best year at the plate came in 1935 when he hit a robust .341. He also holds the National League record for number of putouts by a second baseman at 466, which he set in 1933.

 

After the 1943 season, he opted to join the United States Navy and miss the following two seasons. He spent most of 1944 at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. In 1945, Herman was a part of a Navy baseball team that traveled tothe Pacific Islands to play. He served as the player- manager of an Aiea Barracks team that lost in the 14th Naval District League Championship game in September of 1945. During that season, Herman was elected an All-Star and league MVP. Later that month, he played on the National League team that won the Navy World Series in Hawaii.

 

After his time in the Navy, Herman went on to play a few more seasons in the Major Leagues prior to managing thePirates and the Red Sox. He was voted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1975. Today he is remembered for hishall of fame playing career and his service to his country.