Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Thomas H Sheehan

Thomas H. Sheehan

Born: November 6, 1877   Sacramento, CA
Died: May 22, 1959   Panama City, Panamá


Tommy Sheehan— 3b

1898 Sacramento (PCL)
1899 Sacramento (Cal)
1900 Sacramento (Cal)
1901 Sacramento (Cal)
1902 Sacramento (Cal)
1903 Sacramento (PCL)
1904 Tacoma (PCL)
1905 Tacoma (PCL)
1909 Oakland (Cal St)
1910 Stockton (Cal St)
1910 Portland (PCL)
1911 Portland (PCL)
1912 Sacramento (PCL)

Additionally, he appeared in the majors in the following seasons:
1900 Giants  
1906 Pirates    
1907 Pirates    
1908 Dodgers  

The question nobody can answer— at least to my satisfaction— is why in California, where he was born, does almost every mention of him refer to him by calling him by his nickname “Midget” or simply say some to the effect of: “The play was made by the midget third baseman”?

I find it hard to believe that the encyclopedias still carry him at 5’ 8” and weighing160 pounds.

One would not call somebody 5’8” midget even today, much less at the beginning of  the 1900s.  

I mentioned this to Bill Carle— chair of the SABR Bio Committee— some time back, but never even received a response, and the encyclopedias keep on listing Tommy Sheehan as 5’ 8”.  Though I once worked with a guy named “Shorty” who was 6’5”, I believe Tommy Sheehan more likely have been 5’ 5” or less.  A midget in that era would most likely be closer to five foot tall than five foot eight.


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