Mike Kickham

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Michael Joseph Kickham

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Biographical Information[edit]

Mike Kickham made his major league debut in 2013.

Amateur Career[edit]

Kickham comes from an athletic family. His family played tennis in college and his mother played volley ball. Kickham's twin brother, Dan Kickham, played minor league ball in the Detroit Tigers' chain. Mike hit .390 and had a 1.16 ERA as a high school senior. He had a 3-3, 5.62 record in junior college in 2009 but struck out 47 in 41 innings. In 2010, he was 4-9 with a 5.25 ERA for Missouri State but struck out over a batter per inning. He led the Missouri Valley Conference with 56 earned runs allowed and tied for first in losses but also was second in strikeouts, setting a school record (103). The San Francisco Giants were interested enough to take him in the 6th round of the 2010 amateur draft; Hugh Walker was the scout. He would be the first member of the 2010 Giants draft class to make the majors.


Mike was assigned to the AZL Giants to begin his pro career but gave up four hits, two walks and three runs in 2 1/3 IP in 2010. In 2011, he was 5-10 with a 4.11 ERA for the Augusta Greenjackets, tying for 4th in the South Atlantic League in losses (tied for third in the Giants farm chain). He made major progress with the 2012 Richmond Flying Squirrels at 11-10, 3.05 with a .216 opponent average and 137 strikeouts in 150 2/3 innings, though he walked 75. He also went 8 for 25 with two walks and two doubles. He was tied for third in the Eastern League in wins (behind Brett Marshall and Brandon Cumpton), tied for 10th in losses, second in strikeouts (14 shy of leader Trevor May), 4th in ERA (between Vidal Nuno and Paolo Espino) and third in walks (behind May and Julio Rodriguez. He was named the All-Star lefty in the EL, joining teammate Chris Heston, who was the All-Star right-handed pitcher. It was the first time two teammates had taken home those honors since the EL had gone to honoring a lefty and righty on their All-Star team.

He began 2013 with the Fresno Grizzlies and was mediocre after 10 games (3-4, 4.33, 54 K in 54 IP) but got the call to the majors in late May when Ryan Vogelsong went on the DL. Overall, he was 7-7, 4.31 in 20 starts for the Grizzlies.


In his first game in the big leagues on May 28, 2013, Kickham took a 6-3 loss to the Oakland A's, unable to make it through the 3rd inning. He retired Coco Crisp, Chris Young and Yoenis Céspedes in order in the 1st. In the 2nd, though, he allowed a single to Jed Lowrie and a two-run homer to Derek Norris. After retiring Crisp to open the 3rd, he walked Young, allowed a double to Céspedes, intentionally walked Josh Donaldson, walked Lowrie to force in Young and gave up a single to Nate Freiman. George Kontos replaced Kickham and stopped the bleeding but the A's had enough of a lead to win the game. In all, he pitched 12 times for the Giants, including two other starts, but his record was an unappetizing 0-3, 10.16. He spent most of 2014 back in Fresno, where he was 8-8, 4.43 in 27 starts, logging 148 1/3 innings. He also made two appearances in San Francisco, both in relief, with no record and an ERA of 22.50, after allowing 5 earned runs in 2 innings.

He was placed on waivers by the Giants after the 2014 season and on December 23rd was claimed by the Chicago Cubs. He never actually got to put on a Cubs uniform, though, as on January 14, 2015, he was traded to the Seattle Mariners in return for minor league P Lars Huijer. After being out of the majors for five full seasons, during which he pitched in the minor leagues and in the independent American Association for one season, he returned to the big leagues with the Boston Red Sox in 2020. Two of his six appearances were starts, and he went 1-1, 7.71, pitching 14 innings.

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