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Harry Chappas

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Harry Perry Chappas

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[edit] Biographical Information

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Harry Chappas got attention because he was listed as 5'3" (he was really 5'6") but he was a decent hitter at a young age. At age 20 he made his debut with the Chicago White Sox in 1978, hitting .267 in 75 at-bats, and in 1979 he hit .288 in 59 at-bats. In 1980, he slipped to .160 in 50 at-bats.

He hit one home run in the majors on August 20, 1979 off Bill Travers of the Milwaukee Brewers. He was used almost exclusively as a shortstop. Chappas was only listed by Sox owner Bill Veeck at 5'3" as a publicity stunt. However, he stood nose-to-nose with Phil Rizzuto, who was 5'6". The Sporting News Registers, as well as most yearbooks and history books on the White Sox made the change, but some encyclopedias to date have missed it. The White Sox announced his height as 5'6" (although The Sporting News Baseball Registers used 5'7").

Chappas went to Miami-Dade College and was picked in the 21st round of the 1975 amateur draft. He played in the Sox minor league system from 1976 to 1980 when he wasn't in the majors, hitting over .300 in Single A in 1978 and in Triple A in 1979. With the Appleton Foxes in 1978, a team which won 97 games, he was the only .300 hitter and made the league All-Star team. He then played for the Denver Bears, in the Montreal Expos organization, in 1981.

He raised finches, and took some of them on the road with him. He also spent much of his nights building model airplanes.

"He stole some big bases for me… He has a great pair of hands and a great arm. He tries to hit the ball out of the park too much, but he has the tools." - Felipe Alou, one of his managers

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