Doug Jones, former MLB All-Star reliever and Lebanon grad, dies at 64 from COVID-19 complications

National and World

FILE – Cleveland Indians pitcher Doug Jones poses for a file photo in Cleveland, date not known. Jones, a five-time All-Star reliever who had his best success closing for the Indians, has died. He was 64. Jones spent seven seasons with the Indians and ranks third on the club’s career saves list with 129. (AP Photo, File)

CLEVELAND (AP) — Doug Jones, a five-time All-Star reliever who played high school baseball in Lebanon, has died at the age of 64.

Jones had his best success as a closer for Cleveland, where he spent seven seasons, ranking third on the club’s career saves list with 129. The team, which officially transitioned to the Cleveland Guardians name last week, said Monday it was “saddened by the loss of one of our organization’s all-time greats.”

MLB.com reported that Jones died from complications due to COVID-19. He graduated from Lebanon High School in the 70s and made the all-conference team. He also pitched a season for Butler University before transferring to Central Arizona College.

One of Jones’ former Indians teammates, pitcher Greg Swindell, posted on Twitter that his friend had died. Swindell called Jones “one hell of a pitcher.”

Known as “Jonesy,” Jones pitched in the majors for 16 seasons with Cleveland, Houston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, the Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee and Oakland. He had two stints with the Indians, first from 1986-91 and again in 1998.

The right-hander had a career-high 43 saves in 1990 for Cleveland, where he made the All-Star team three times. In 2001, he was selected as one of the team’s top 100 players.

Jones went 69-79 with a 3.30 ERA in 846 big league games. He retired following the 2000 season with the Athletics.

Jones was drafted by the Brewers in 1978. He was born in Covina, California, before his family moved to Lebanon.

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