Mike Kingery’s career with the Colorado Rockies might not have been long, but it was certainly impactful in the franchise’s early years.
After spending 1993 in the minor league system for the Kansas City Royals, Mike Kingery was signed in the offseason by the Colorado Rockies. In one of the most shocking seasons in Rockies history, Kingery would come out of nowhere to not only play a key defensive role in the outfield, but also post a .349/.402/.532 slash line in the strike-shortened 1994 season. That .349 batting average is the eighth-highest single-season mark in Colorado history.
And before you start talking about Kingery hitting at altitude and this being a classic example of a ballplayer flourishing at a mile high, check the statistics. In Denver that season (playing at Mile High Stadium), Kingery put together a .333/.381/.507 slash line at home. On the road, Kingery posted a slash line of .362/.419/.552.
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In an exclusive interview as part of the latest Rox Pile Rockies Report podcast, Kingery talked with me about that 1994 season and what went right. We also talked about his 1995 campaign with the Rockies where he helped lead the team to its first-ever playoff appearance.
Kingery also tells some great stories about those early days of the franchise, including the interesting question he was asked before the 1995 season when the Rockies acquired Larry Walker.
Colorado was one of six teams that Kingery played with during his 10-year Major League career. However, as he says on the podcast, he enjoyed playing in Denver more than any other city. You can listen to the podcast to find out exactly why he feels that way.
Now the owner of Solid Foundation Baseball School in Minnesota, Kingery reflects back in the podcast about playing at Mile High Stadium and has some great stories to share about Walker, Walt Weiss, and even current Rockies manager Bud Black, who was his teammate with both the Royals and San Francisco Giants.
Click below to listen to our in-depth talk with Kingery as we travel back to a pair of seasons that won’t be forgotten by Rockies fans any time soon.