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1945-1950 Dottie Collins 1945-1950 Dottie Collins

Women's Baseball History

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Started pitching in fast-pitch softball leagues at age 13 in sunny, southern California

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She started playing professionally under her maiden name of Dorothy Wiltse in 1944 with the Minneapolis Millerettes of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League - the league the hit-movie 'A League of Their Own' portrayed.

By using an arsenal of fastballs, change-ups and curves Wiltse rang up at least 20 victories in her first four big-league seasons - 1944-1947 and finished with a resounding career ERA of 1.83.

In her rookie season, 1944, Dottie Wiltse led the league by striking out 205 batters and had a solid 20-16 WL record for the last place Minneapolis team. However she lacked control and also led the pioneering womens baseball league with a record 44 hit batsman.

The following year, 1945, she moved with the team to Fort Wayne, Indiana, and with the Fort Wayne Daisies hurled a phenomenal 17 shutouts en-route to a brilliant 29-10 record. During this season, after pitching and winning both games of a doubleheader, Wiltse met and fell in love with fan Harvey Collins, who she married in the Spring of 1946.

Playing under her married name, Dottie Collins continued her successful career in the AAGPBL. In 1946, she posted a 22-20 record while striking out 294 batters.

In 1947 when the girls playing field's dimension was changed, the pitchers' mound was raised, the pitching distance lengthened, and the ball was made smaller but more livelier to become more-like men's baseball many of the league's pitchers had difficulties adjusting - but not Collins.

In 1947 when under-hand pitching also was banned and only side-arm or over-hand pitching was to be used, Dottie Collins posted a 20-14 record.

Pitching much of the 1948 season while pregnant, she took a leave of absence in her fifth month. Returning to the Girls' League for her final season in 1950, Collins pitched over-hand and had a 13-8 WL record.

Minneapolis Millerettes 1944, Fort Wayne Daises 1944-1950

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