The base ball team for Pennsylvania State University was known as the Penn State Nittany Lions. There uniform colors were blue and white. Even though base ball was not the strongest sport, they were able to participate in the NCCA Division I FBS and the Big Ten Conference.
Since the team also participates in Football games, it could be said that baseball is not the team’s primary focus. However, looking back through history will show us that the Penn State Nittany Lions has produced names that have become major league legends and pioneers. These names include Tom Lawless, Cliff Heathcote, and Ed Klepfer.
Tow Lawless was one of the most famous players to ever play major league. He used to play as an infielder. Tom was born on December 19th, 1956 in Erie, Pennsylvania. His debut match was for the Cincinnati Reds which took place on July 15th, 1982. During his career, he was known to change another three teams which included the Montreal Expos, St. Louis Cardinals and the Toronto Blue Jays. His final appearance in the major league was naturally for the Toronto Blue Jays.
This was on July 4th, 1990. During his career, he was popularly known for some of the most amazing statistics of baseball for his time. He had a batting average of 0.207 with 2 home runs. In those days, home runs were much more difficult to achieve. The total amounts of runs that he had achieved during his career was 24, all of which he batted in.
Cliff Heathcote is another product of Penn State Nittany Lions who has made significant contributions in the major league industry. As an outfielder, he was able to maintain a batting average of 0.275 and had achieved a total of 42 home runs. On top of these, he has also made a total of 448 runs all of which he has batted in. And as if these were not enough, he also achieved a total of 191 stolen bases, which is very exceptional during his time.
Heathcote’s first major league game happened on June 4, 1918, where he played for the St. Louis Cardinals. He has also played for the Chicago Cubs for 4 years, for the Cincinnati Reds for 8 years, and for the Philadelphia Phillies for a year. His final game was for the Phillies and it happened on September 24, 1932. The legendary baseball player passed away on September 24, 1939, at age 41.
Remarkable pitchers are quite rare in the major league, but not as rare as Penn State Nittany Lions’ own, Ed Klepfer. Klepfer was born on March 17, 1888. His first major league team was the New York Yankees and his first major league game happened on July 11, 1914. Klepfer has joined other teams such as the Chicago White Sox and the Cleveland Indians.
During his career, he was known to change two different teams. These included the Chicago White Sox and the Cleveland Indians. During his career Ed was able to achieve some amazing career statistics. He had an earned run average of 2.81 with a record figure of 22-17. His total strike outs were 165.
Legendary players such as Tom Lawless, Cliff Heathcote and Ed Klepfer have become an inspiration to future baseball players and have epitomized what the game is all about. They are the pride of the Penn State Nittany Lions and should also serve as the team’s inspiration and motivation to excel not just in football but in the arena of baseball as well.