James Edward “Jim” Hegan (August 3, 1920 - June 17, 1984) was one of the great defensive catchers of the 1940s and 1950s and was partially responsible for three pitchers reaching the National Baseball Hall of Fame - Bob Feller, Early Wynn and Bob Lemon. Hegan was renown for his ability to handle a pitching staff, and Cleveland had one of the best during his era. The Indians signed him in 1938; he debuted in 1941 and then spent three years serving in the United States Coast Guard during World War II. Upon his return to the Cleveland lineup, he became the everyday catcher for the better part of the next 12 seasons. His ability to call a game was incredible and he helped the Indians pitching staff lead the American League in earned run average from 1948 to 1951, 1954 and 1956. In 1951 and 1952, Jim caught three twenty game winners each season (Wynn, Mike Garcia, Fell – 1951/Lemon, Garcia, Wynn – 1952) and nearly had a third in 1948, but Feller only won 19. He caught three no hitters in his career: Don Black – 7/10/1947, Bob Lemon – 6/30/1948, Bob Feller – 7/1/1951. Though he was only an average player at the plate with a career .228 bating average, Hegan’s defensive ability helped the Indians win the 1948 World Series and post a then-record 111-win season in 1954 only to fall to the New York Giants in the World Series. Jim Hegan played 17 years in the big leagues with the Indians (1941-1942, 1946-1957), the Detroit Tigers (1958), the Philadelphia Phillies 1958-1959), the San Francisco Giants (1959) and the Chicago Cubs (1960). The five-time American League All-Star finished his career with a .228 batting average, 1,087 hits, 550 runs and 525 RBI. Behind the plate, he had a .990 fielding percentage with 7,506 putouts, 695 assists, 136 double plays and 86 errors in 8,287 chances while posting a superb 50% caught stealing percentage.