William Crutcher “Big Bill” Lee (October 21, 1909 - June 15, 1977) was part of a trade from the St. Louis Cardinals to the Chicago Cubs that was originally intended to be a ruse by Cards GM Branch Rickey as he offered Lee and another hurler to Cubs GM Bill Veeck, Sr. With the Cubs rotation heavily laden with right handed pitchers and the Redbirds offering aright-hander and a left-hander, Rickey expected Veeck to choose lefty Clarence Heise, but that was not the case as Lee joined the Cubs and pitched ten seasons for the Northsiders. Heise appeared in one game and vanished and on this rare occasion Rickey wiped egg from his face. Bill Lee joined the Cardinals organization in 1932 and went 40-18 in his first two seasons with the Columbus Red Birds before the trade to Chicago. Lee was immediately inserted into the Cubs starting rotation and in 1935 he led the National League in winning percentage *(.769) after going 20-6 as Chicago won the National League pennant. In 1938, he was diabolical as he led the NL in wins with a 22-9 record and also led in winning percentage (.710), ERA (2.66), starts (37) and shutouts (9) while earning his first of two straight All-Star appearances. The durable Big Bill led the NL three times in starts during his tenure with the Cubs (1934-1943) and pitched them to two pennants, but was unable to lead them over the hump and win a World Series. Lee was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies (1943-1945) and the pitched for the Boston Braves (1945-1946) before retuning to Chicago for one final year (1947). Following his stretch with the Cubs to start his career, Bill had difficulties seeing the signs and attempted to use eyeglasses to improve his poor vision. However, they were of little help and soon after he retired in 1947, he underwent surgery to repair detached retinas. He would ultimately go blind. Bill Lee did, however, enjoy a 14-year career in the Major Leagues, posting a record of 169-157 with 998 strikeouts, 182 complete games, 29 shutouts and a 3.54 ERA in 462 contests.