Curt Simmons

Curt Simmons (third from right), a high school student and pitcher for the Babe Ruth Eastern team, with teammates and Carl Hubbell (left) at the American Legion all-star game at the Polo Grounds in 1945. His senior year, Simmons hit. .465 with some power but drew even more notice for his pitching performance—he struck out 102 and gave up only 12 hits in 431⁄3 innings. After considering bids from the Red Sox and Tigers, he accepted the Phillies’ offer of a $65,000 signing bonus, breaking the unofficial record. (COURTESY OF PAUL ROGERS)