Hank Sweeney

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Harry Leon Sweeney

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Biographical Information[edit]

Harry Sweeney was a first baseman 11 years (1934-1946); seven in semipro/independent ball (1934-1940); ten in the minors (1937;1939;1943-1946) and a cup of coffee in 1944, losing two years to the Military. Sweeney was born on Tuesday, December 28, 1915, in Franklin, TN. He graduated from High School in 1934 at age 18 and played semipro ball. He broke into Organized Baseball in 1937 at age 21 with Paducah in the Kitty League. He played for Paducah (1937) and McKeesport in the Pennsylvania State Association (1939) and entered the U.S. Armed Forces for World War II (BN).

After discharge, he played for Albany in the Eastern League and York in the Inter-State League (1943-1944). Sweeney was 28 years old when he broke into the big leagues on October 1, 1944, with the Pittsburgh Pirates. He played first base in one game for the Pirates with two at bats (striking out once), nine putouts and an assist. He returned to the minors with the San Diego Padres in the Pacific Coast League (1945); Montgomery in the Southeastern League (1946); and York in the Inter-State League (1946); ending his baseball career at age 30.

In 1944, his best year in the minors, he had 14 home runs and 108 RBI at .334. Overall in the minors, he had 19 home runs and 195 RBI.

He was a yard foreman for Monsanto Chemical Company. He died at age 64 at Maury County Hospital in Columbia, TN on May 6, 1980 and is buried at Leiper's Fork Cemetery in Columbia.


Principal sources for Hank Sweeney include newspaper obituaries (OB), government Veteran records (VA,CM,CW), Stars & Stripes (S&S), Sporting Life (SL), The Sporting News (TSN), The Sports Encyclopedia:Baseball 2006 by David Neft & Richard Cohen (N&C), old Who's Who in Baseballs (none) (WW), old Baseball Registers (none) (BR) , old Daguerreotypes by TSN (none) (DAG), Stars&Stripes (S&S), The Baseball Necrology by Bill Lee (BN), Pat Doyle's Professional Ballplayer DataBase (PD), The Baseball Library (BL), Baseball in World War II Europe by Gary Bedingfield (GB) ; The Pacific Coast League: A Statistical History, 1903-1957 by Dennis Snelling; and independent research by Walter Kephart (WK) and Frank Russo (FR) and others.

Related Sites[edit]