“Midget! Midget midget midget!”
If there’s one complaint people have about baseball, it would be that it’s too straight laced. That is, if they have a complaint about baseball. That’s usually because baseball players only show a lot of effort for short periods of time before resting a while. It’s the only sport that has a bench that doesn’t require a bench, because honestly, when was the last time you saw a guy walk to the dugout and need to rest his legs?
But if there was one man out there that understood how to jazz up Baseball and take an American sport even more American by adding something crazy, it would be the great Bill Veeck, a man who saw a sport that could be stuffy and uninviting and decided to liven the hell out of it, likely saying, “We gotta do something to make this game more exciting. You know, something like a midget baseball player. Well, not a midget baseball player, but you get the idea, something like that.”
“Dammit, fine let’s just go with it.”
Yes, Bill Veeck was a unique brand of MLB baseball team owner. While some owners might have their team involved in messy divorce court proceedings, Veeck (“as in Wreck” as his autobiography so astutely put it) would do absurd promotion stunts (his ugly divorces very rarely involved the teams he owned). As the last Baseball owner who was not independently wealthy, Bill Veeck had everything a true American could ask for. A man who built himself from the ground up, lost a limb in the war, and caused a mass riot when he wanted to destroy as many Disco albums as possible. Veeck was a man too great for embellishment, though we once heard that he could life a car over his head with one hand while juggling midgets with the other. But only 3 midgets. Like we said, we’re not going to embellish any of this.
So here’s the tale of the man with one leg and a love of midgets.