Since in a Linux VM not running X windows, we can't use vmware-toolbox or .vmx to check the version of the VMware tools. We can check the version of VMware tools listed in vmware-config-tools.pl, although it could be the case that VMware tools got installed, but haven't been configured yet. Run the following command to grab the version of VMware tools have been installed.
#grep buildNr /usr/bin/vmware-config-tools.pl
$buildNr = '3.5.0 build-82663'
3.5.0 build-82663 is the VMware tools version number.