Al Lien

From BR Bullpen

Alfred Woodrow Lien

  • Bats Both, Throws Left
  • Height 6' 2", Weight 180 lb.

BR Minors page

Biographical Information[edit]

Pitcher Al Lien played in the minor leagues for 17 season, missing the 1944 and 1945 season due to military service during World War II. He was a mainstay for the San Francisco Seals of the Pacific Coast League, playing for them from 1942 to 1954, He won in double figures in 13 of his 17 seasons, with a high of 20 wins in 1951, but never pitched in the majors.

His first two seasons in 1936 and 1937 were with the Joplin Miners of the Western Association, going 11-8 and 10-9 respectively, but also improving his ERA from 5.47 the first year to 2.53 the second, leading the circuit. In 1938, he went 13-8 for the Wenatchee Chiefs of the Western International League. he was just 1-2 in 18 games for the Binghamton Triplets of the Eastern League, but that was an uncharacteristic blip for someone who was otherwise a reliable workhorse starting pitcher. In 1940 and 1941, he was with the Yakima Pippins, back in the Western International League, going 10-10 and 12-9.

He reached the PCL and the Seals for the first time in 1942, after starting out with the Tacoma Tigers in the Western International League again. He was a sparkling 13-5, 1.96 for Tacoma before earning his first shot in what was the highest-level minor league circuit in the U.S. at the time, going 6-8, 2.78 in 19 games the rest of the way. he would never pitch in another league or for another team after that. Apart for his 20-win season, his statistics were never eye-popping, but he was very consistent, taking his turn as a starting pitcher regularly and usually winning more than he won. He pitched until he was 39 years old. Among his career highlights, on September 10, 1950, he pitched a 17-inning complete game 1-0 shutout over the Hollywood Stars in a feat reminding people of the golden days of the Deadball Era.

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