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Dick Seay

Sport: Baseball

Born: November 30, 1904

Died: April 6, 1981

Town: Hillsborough Township

Richard William Seay was born November 30, 1904 in West New York. A hard-hitting, slick-fielding middle infielder, Dick began his professional career in the mid-1920s with the Pennsylvania Red Caps, a barnstorming Negro League team. The team got its name because several players worked as red-cap porters in Penn Station across the river in New York—including his double-play partner, Chino Smith. Owner Bill Egan, who signed Dick, was a stationmaster; many of the players were black students earning tuition money in the summers.

Dick understood that part of his job was to entertain fans, and he was quite a showman. He distinguished himself as one of the foremost defensive second basemen in baseball in his 30s. He did not have the big bat of his old DP partner, Smith, but was a superb bunter and hit-and-run man.

Dick helped the Philadelphia Stars win the Negro League championship in 1934 and was a member of the great Pittsburgh Crawfords great team of 1935-36, and joined the Newark Eagles in 1937 as part of their Million Dollar Infield along with Mule Suttles, Willie Wells and Ray Dandridge. In 1940, he joined the Black Yankees, who played their home games in Paterson, and played with the club until he was drafted. He served in the military for two years and returned to finish his career in the U.S. with the Black Yankees in 1947.

As a Negro League player born in the North, Dick helped his teammates, who were predominantly from the South, navigate their way through the upper half of the country. Likewise, they instructed Dick on important do's and don't's when his teams toured the South. Dick played and managed several more years in the Caribbean winter leagues after his playing days in the U.S.. He returned to Hudson County after baseball and passed away in Jersey City at the age of 76.


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