Cieradkowski: Clint Thomas, the Hawk

From SABR member Gary Cieradkowski at Studio Gary C on November 23, 2019:

Clint Thomas was one of those rare ballplayers who was absolutely consistent no matter where or when he played. When you had Thomas on your club, you could conservatively pencil him in for a .310 average and sleep tight at night knowing your outfield had no gaps on either side of the centerfielder. Thomas played pro ball for 17 seasons, many of those year-round in Cuba or Florida in the winter. He’s credited with a lifetime Negro League average of .321, Cuban Winter League average of .311 and .311 in 35 games played against white major league teams. If you’re talking about consistent, you’re talking about Clint Thomas.

Clinton Cyrus Thomas was born in Greenup, Kentucky, a town along the banks of the Ohio River in 1896. According to Thomas, he didn’t play much baseball as a kid because there weren’t any ball fields for he and his friends to play on. It wasn’t until his family moved to the more urban surroundings of Columbus, Ohio where the teenager began his baseball career. He played a little ball when he wasn’t working in a Kroger grocery store, but then World War I began. Thomas served a year in the Army and was a Sergeant by the time the war ended.

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Originally published: November 26, 2019. Last Updated: November 26, 2019.