Friday, February 8, 2019

The Worst Red Sox Team of All Time Pt. 12: Bob Kline

Failure is often even more fascinating than success. I am definitely intrigued by the 1932 Boston Red Sox, the worst Red Sox team of all time. The team finished with a record of 43-111, for a winning percentage of .279 and very little went right.
Bob Kline led the 1932 Red Sox in wins.  That is pretty much the highlight of his brief Major League career.  Well, that and being traded for Lefty Grove.  That is a pretty big feather in the cap as well.  But we will get to that.

Kline came up with the Red Sox in 1930 as a 20-year-old right-hander and pitched a single scoreless inning.  Kline was big for the time period (6-3, 230) and was generally more effective when he was heavier.  He did not do much for the team in 1931 before becoming one of the better pitchers on the team in 1932.  That season, he was 11-13, which was actually pretty good given how bad the team was on the whole.  Unfortunately, he also had a 5.28 ERA and a disappointing 31 strikeouts versus 76 walks in 172 innings.  Kline was used a lot in the bullpen, starting just 19 games out of 47.  1933 was pretty much more of the same.  During his time with the Red Sox, Kline was 23-26 with a 4.82 ERA.

Before the 1934 season, Kline and shortstop Rabbit Warstler were sent to the Philadelphia Athletics along with $125,000.00 for the trio of Max Bishop, Rube Walberg, and eventual Hall of Famer Lefty Grove.  It was a terribly one-sided deal in favor of the Red Sox, mostly due to the fact that the A's needed money more than anything at the time.  Kline did not spend much time in Philly though and was sold to Washington during the season.  He ended the season 7-2 with an unsightly 7.21 ERA.  It was his last appearance in the Majors.

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