The burly Cline - at 6-foot, 195 pounds - is batting .386 with a home run, 14 RBI and a team-leading 25 runs. His defensive totals include only three errors. Cline doesn't look like the stereotypical leadoff hitter, but his numbers suggest otherwise. He has walked a team-leading 14 times and has struck out only seven, the least of any regular.
While passed balls are not registered as errors, Cline has - only three times - made an error that has allowed a runner to score or advance.
"I would've liked to get on the field a little earlier," Cline said. "We had Josh Burdette, a really stout catcher, and I didn't really show Coach (Ken) Samms any ability in the outfield or anything like that. Other than that, I knew my junior year I would have to come alive and do something."
His varsity career is coming to a close, and the Black Eagles' advancement will depend solely on how they deal with George Washington in a best-of-three series next week.
The only regular season meeting ended in a 13-12 GW victory when South Charleston sandwiched senior pitcher Austin Santrock between a pair of freshmen.
That makes Cline's job even harder, because he knows curveballs in the dirt are inevitable with young pitchers.
"I know they're young and I know they're very talented," Cline said of SC's young pitchers, including freshmen Jacob Marler and Trevor Sampson. "They're both very talented. I do kind of anticipate (balls in the dirt). I know it's coming. If it's a curveball, I'm waiting for it, I'm watching it. They're pretty consistent with their curveballs, it does the same thing every time.
"I wish I could hang with these guys for a couple more years."
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Rich Stevens at richstev...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4837.