Jason Daniel Kendall (born June 26, 1974, in San Diego, California) is a Major League Baseball catcher for the Milwaukee Brewers. He is the son of former catcher Fred Kendall, who played in the majors from 1969–1980.
Kendall attended and played at Torrance High School in California, where he tied a national high school record by hitting safely in 43 straight games. He was drafted out of high school in the first round of the 1992 Major League Baseball Draft (23rd overall pick) by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
He made the major league squad in 1996, and was the Pirates' starting catcher until he was traded to the Oakland Athletics for Arthur Rhodes and Mark Redman after the 2004 season. In his rookie year, he hit .300, made the National League All-Star Team, and was named NL rookie of the year by The Sporting News (he finished third in voting for the MLB Rookie of the Year award). He was also an All-Star in 1998 and 2000.
In 1999, he suffered a season-ending injury when he dislocated his ankle while running to first base in a July 4 game against Milwaukee. The unusual compound dislocation, which was initially misidentified as a fracture, was one of the most grisly injuries in recent baseball history.
From 2002-04, Kendall led all major league catchers in games and innings behind the plate. He is the Pirates' all-time leader in games caught.
As a batter, he is a careful, consistent hitter. Though he lacks power, he is a lifetime .297 hitter who rarely strikes out. Though fast for a catcher, Kendall does not possess overwhelming speed for a major league ballplayer. He has led all major league catchers in steals a number of times in the past 7 years, however (2000, with 22; 2001 -- 13; 2002 -- 15; 2004 -- 11; and 2006 -- 11). His lifetime steal percentage of 68.5% is about the league average. Kendall has led off many games in his major league career. The frequency by which he gets hit by pitches (he is the Pirates' all-time leader in the category) is a testament to both his batting focus and his unwillingness to be intimidated by pitchers.Template:POV-statement
Athletics, Cubs, Brewers
During the 2005 season, however, Kendall struggled at the plate. His .321 slugging percentage was the worst (by 20 points) among all major league players who qualified for the batting title. His .271 batting average was the second lowest of his career. In the field, he allowed 101 stolen bases, more than any other catcher in major league baseball.
The 2006 season marked Kendall's first ever post-season appearance, as the Athletics clinched the 2006 American League Western Division championship on September 26. He recorded his first playoff hit in the second game of the American League Division Series off Minnesota's Boof Bonser.
On July 16, 2007, he was traded to the Chicago Cubs for fellow catcher Rob Bowen and minor league pitcher Jerry Blevins. At the time of the trade, Kendall had the lowest on base percentage (.261) and second lowest slugging percentage (.281) of any starter in major league baseball for 2007. In the field he allowed 111 stolen bases (131 attempts, 20 caught), more than any other catcher in major league baseball.
On November 21, 2007, he agreed in principle to a one-year deal with the Milwaukee Brewers. As of July 10, 2008, Kendall is batting .264 as the Brewer's everyday catcher, with a .346 on-base percentage and 26 runs batted in.Kendall threw out roughly 40% of base stealers in 2008. Through 2008 his career batting average is .303. Upon making his 110th start of the 2008 season, Kendall fulfilled the option in his contract, securing himself a spot in the Brewers lineup in 2009. On May 18th, 2009 Kendall hit his 2,000th career hit against the St. Louis Cardinals.
He retired during the 2012 season.
- Hitting for the cycle
- List of second generation MLB players
- Jason Kendall Statistics. Sports Reference, Inc.. Retrieved on 2007-05-28.
- Urban, Mychael (July 16, 2007). A's deal catcher Kendall to Cubs. MLB.com. Retrieved on 2007-07-16.
- Kendall, Brewers agree in principle. MLB.com (November 21, 2007). Retrieved on 2007-11-22.
- ESPN - Jason Kendall Stats, News, Photos - Milwaukee Brewers. ESPN.com (May 22, 2008). Retrieved on 2008-05-22.
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