Bob Martyn

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Robert Gordon Martyn

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Biographical Information[edit]

College career[edit]

Bob Martyn is an alumni of Linfield College. His father, Bernard Martyn, aunt, Lillian Turner Millsap and uncle, Bill Turner also attended Linfield, therefore it could be said that attending Linfield was something of a family tradition. Bob's first year at Linfield was 1948. He attended the college not only because much of his family went there, but also because it was affiliated with the Baptist church he went to. Although he played shortstop in high school in Twin Falls, ID, baseball coach Henry Lever immediately changed his position to outfielder. Martyn once said of the change: "That was probably a major break for my future."

Bob was a Northwest Conference All-Star in 1950, 1951 and 1952, and he helped lead the Linfield Wildcats to conference championship victories in 1950 and 1951.

Academically, Martyn double-majored in mathematics and sociology and he graduated cum laude. While playing professional baseball, he earned his masters degree in education in 1959, studying between seasons.

In 2000, Martyn was elected to the Linfield College Athletics Hall of Fame. His father was elected in 1999. They are one of two father-son combinations in the Linfield College Athletics Hall of Fame.

Minor leagues[edit]

Originally signed by the New York Yankees in 1952, Martyn, in his first professional baseball game on July 4th of that year, went 5-for-6 while playing for the Boise Yankees.

An impressive minor league player, he was named to three All-Star teams while in the minors. In the 1956 American Association All-Star Game, he hit two home runs, winning the MVP Award for the game.

Major leagues[edit]

He was sent by the Yankees to the Kansas City Athletics in a trade that took place on June 15, 1957. The Yankees sent Martyn, Woodie Held, Billy Martin and Ralph Terry to the Athletics for Ryne Duren, Jim Pisoni and Harry Simpson.

Just three days after the trade, Martyn made his big league debut, on June 18th. Facing the Washington Senators, Martyn – playing in right field – went 1 for 4 with a walk in his first big league game. Overall in his first big league season, he hit .267 in 58 games. In 131 at-bats, he hit one home run and drove in 12 RBI.

The following year,1958, Martyn appeared in 95 games, hitting .261 in 226 at-bats. That year, he was sixth in the American League with 7 triples and ninth in the league with 5 intentional walks.

Despite having two respectable seasons in a row prior to 1959, 1959 would end up being his final year in the majors. He appeared in only one game, getting only one at-bat. In his final big league at-bat, pinch-hitting for Bob Grim, he grounded out.

On April 12th that year, he was traded back to the Yankees with Mike Baxes for Russ Snyder and Tom Carroll.

His playing career was interrupted by two years in military service, forcing him to miss all of the 1953 season.

Overall, Martyn played in 154 big league games. In 358 at-bats, he hit .263 with 3 home runs and 35 RBI. He hit 12 doubles and 11 triples, scoring 35 runs and stealing 2 bases (while being caught stealing 7 times).

Post-baseball career[edit]

After his professional baseball career ended in 1960, Martyn worked for Tektronix for 23 years. He served twice on the Linfield Alumni Board and was president in 1973.


Related Sites[edit]