Longtime reliever Doug Jones dies at 64 after COVID battle

Doug Jones, who shined as a relief pitcher during a 16-season career and notched 303 career saves, died at age 64.

The Cleveland Guardians announced Jones’ passing Monday.

“We are saddened by the loss of one of our (organization’s) all-time greats, Doug Jones,” the team stated.

Fellow former big-league pitcher Greg Swindell said Jones died of complications from COVID-19.

“Sad to tweet, that a long time friend, teammate, husband father grandfather and one (heck) of a pitcher Doug Jones has passed from complications from COVID,” Swindell wrote on his Twitter account. “RIP JONSEY. Please keep the family in your prayers.”

Jones went 69-79 with a 3.30 ERA in 846 career games (four starts) with seven organizations, including the then-Cleveland Indians, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers and Oakland Athletics. He also had short stints with the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and Baltimore Orioles.

The pitcher from Indiana earned the moniker “Mild Thing” for his terrific changeup, and he made five All-Star teams. His 129 saves with Cleveland ranks third in franchise history.

Jones also tallied 62 saves for the Astros, 49 saves for the Brewers and 27 saves for the Phillies. He had 22 saves for the Orioles, 12 saves for the Athletics and two saves for the Cubs, and he is one of 31 pitchers in history to post 300-plus saves.