Glancing Back, and Remembering Ty Cline
Though never a star, Ty Cline was a valuable contributor for six different teams during his 12-year major league career. As a pinch hitter and sure-handed outfielder and first baseman, Cline lasted so long because he delivered so consistently, the kind of player who makes late innings productive.
Cline was an All-American at Clemson University when he was signed after his junior year by the Cleveland Indians. He made his debut with the Tribe in 1960, and opened the 1962 season as the team’s starting center fielder, batting .248 in his first full season. He would never again be a full-time player at the major league level.
After the 1962 season, the Indians dealt Cline to the Milwaukee Braves in a trade that brought Joe Adcock to Cleveland. Cline spent three seasons in Milwaukee, a combined .231. He batted .302 in 1964.
From 1966 through 1969, Cline played for four different teams, batting a combined .240. In 1970, he was traded by the Montreal Expos to the Cincinnati Reds, where he played an integral role down the September stretch in helping the Reds claims the 1970 West Division title and National league pennant.
Cline retired after the 1972 season. He finished his career with 437 hits and a .238 lifetime batting average.