Jeff Heath

John Geoffrey "Jeff" Heath (1 April 1915 – 9 December 1975) was a Canadian-born American left fielder in Major League Baseball (MLB) who played most of his career for the Cleveland Indians.

He was one of the American League's most promising power hitters of the late 1930s and early 1940s, twice led the AL in triples, and batted at least .340 with over 100 runs batted in (RBIs) each time. In 1941 he was selected to his first All-Star Game and that same season became the first player from the American League to become a member of the 20–20–20 club when he hit 20 each of doubles, triples and home runs in the same season. His other All-Star Game selections were in 1943 and 1945.

Heath played for the Washington Senators and St. Louis Browns during the 1946 season and the National League's (NL) Boston Braves beginning in 1948. He incurred a compound fracture to his ankle in September 1948 and subsequently the Braves were without their starting left fielder for the 1948 World Series. In 1949, Heath's last season in the majors, sportswriter Franklin Lewis wrote, "There was the inimitable Heath who...should have been one of the greatest players in history. But there were no valves on his temper. He grinned in the manner of a schoolboy or he snarled with the viciousness of a tiger."

By Dean Hanley

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