Truly incomparable among athletes of his time, Jim Thorpe enjoyed professional careers as in basketball, football and baseball, in addition to gold medal performances at the 1912 Olympic Games. Even some Senators followers might not know, however, that arguably the most versatile sportsman in history actually spent time in the outfield for the Hartford ball club. Though just a minor pit stop on Thorpe’s resume and corresponding long list achievements, at the age of 35 Thorpe split time in the Class A Eastern League between the Senators and the Fitchburg/Worcester Boosters, in what would ultimately be his final year of professional baseball. Not surprisingly, Thorpe put up impressive numbers even at his advanced age, hitting .344 with 9 HRs in 96 games of class A ball. He would also play for the Double A Portland squad for 35 games in 1922, batting a respectable .308. While his numbers remained solid, Thorpe’s best baseball years were behind him, playing sporadically in the Majors from his debut with the New York Giants in 1913 through his final big league season in 1919. Appearing in 289 regular season games, Thorpe put together a .252 batting average, with 91 runs, 7 home runs, 82 RBI and 29 stolen bases in his MLB career.Thorpe was good enough to break through to the highest level of professional baseball, however baseball was merely one of his many gifted talents. Not only was football Thorpe’s favorite sport, it was perhaps Thorpe’s most successful at the professional level, already decorated as an Olympic hero (purely amateur at the time), taking gold in the pentathlon and decathlon. Thorpe played football collegiately at Carlisle University, where he served as a running back, defensive back, punter and placekicker, leading the school to a National Championship in 1912. He first played pro football in 1913 with the Pine Village Pros, though most competition was local. In 1915, he signed with the Canton Bulldogs, of the American Professional Football Association (later transitioning into the NFL) where he received much more nationwide exposure. Thorpe played pro football until the age of 41, highlighted by 1923 All-NFL honors, though most of his professional football dominance predated League’s official existence.
Famous Senators, Hartford Senators
Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.