Geoff Jenkins (born July 21, 1974) is a former outfielder in Major League Baseball. He played for the Milwaukee Brewers from 1998 to 2007 and the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008. Jenkins is fourth on the Brewers all-time career home run list trailing only Hall-of-Famer Robin Yount, former MVP Ryan Braun, and former first baseman Prince Fielder. He was previously on the coaching staff of the Peoria Explorers in the Freedom Pro Baseball League.
Jenkins with the Milwaukee Brewers
|Left fielder / Right fielder|
|Born: July 21, 1974|
|April 24, 1998, for the Milwaukee Brewers|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 28, 2008, for the Philadelphia Phillies|
|Runs batted in||733|
|Career highlights and awards|
Jenkins attended Cordova High School in Rancho Cordova, California, where he played football, basketball, and baseball. He was selected for the all-state baseball team as a junior and senior before graduating in 1992.
At USC, Jenkins had a standout career from 1993 through 1995. In his final season, he batted .399 with 78 RBI and a .748 slugging percentage in 70 games, also scoring 75 runs to tie the school record held by Rich Dauer and Mark McGwire; his 23 home runs and 193 total bases ranked second in school history behind McGwire's 1984 totals of 32 and 216. He led the Trojans to the College World Series, where they reached the championship game; Jenkins was named to the all-CWS team, and also earned team co-MVP honors and was named a consensus All-American. In 1996, the year of the CWS' 50th tournament, Jenkins was named to the all-decade team for the 1990s. He finished his USC career with a .369 batting average, 45 home runs (second only to McGwire's 54), a .652 slugging percentage, 180 runs, and school records for runs batted in (175) and total bases (444).
Jenkins was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in the first round (9th overall) in the 1995 amateur draft. He spent the 1995–98 seasons within the Milwaukee farm system, and made his Major League debut with the Brewers as an early season call-up in 1998.
On April 24, 1998, he singled off Orel Hershiser, in his first career plate appearance against the San Francisco Giants and hit a fifth-inning home run off Hersheiser in his third career plate appearance. On September 23 that same year, in the midst of a tense Wild Card race, Jenkins hit the routine fly ball that Brant Brown of the Chicago Cubs dropped allowing three runs to score and the Brewers to win. Jenkins would go on to bat over .300 in his 2nd and 3rd seasons, driving in 90 or more runs three times for one of the perennially weaker teams in the league.
In 2000, he was the Brewers' team MVP. He led the Brewers in batting average (.303) and home runs (34). His 2002 season was cut short when on June 17 in a game against the Houston Astros he suffered a horrific-looking dislocated ankle when sliding into third base feet first during a game. He was safe on the play. He was selected to the National League's All-Star team in 2003 via the MLB's All-Star Final Vote contest where a player is selected from both leagues by fans to join their respective team after the initial roster is announced.
On June 8, 2004, he became the 8th player in Major League history to strike out six times in a single game. After playing in left field for virtually his entire career, he moved to right field for the 2005 and 2006 seasons when Milwaukee acquired Carlos Lee.
In 2006, Jenkins experienced a prolonged offensive slump, struggling in particular against left-handed pitching. In August 2006, the Brewers benched Jenkins, one of their highest-paid players at the time, in favor of the younger Corey Hart.
In 2007, Jenkins returned to left field to platoon with Kevin Mench. On October 30, 2007, the Brewers officially declined their $9 million option on Jenkins' contract, making him a free agent for the 2008 season.
On December 20, 2007, he signed a two-year, $13 million deal with a vesting option for 2010 with the Philadelphia Phillies. Jenkins returned to Miller Park in a Phillies uniform on April 23, 2008, to a crowd of just over 30,000. He was welcomed back with a tribute video, highlighting his ten-year career with the Brewers, and the standing ovation that followed. He received a second ovation while leading off the second inning. Philadelphia would go on to lose the game, 5–4. He went 0 for 3, with a walk and a stolen base. In the postseason, his only hit came on a leadoff double in the bottom of the 6th in Game 5 of the World Series. His hit set the tone for the finale of the World Series as the Phillies won the World Series and earned Jenkins his first World Series ring of his ten-year career.
- "Boston Red Sox's David Ortiz, Milwaukee Brewers' Prince Fielder named captains for MLB Home Run Derby". Retrieved June 22, 2016.
- "mlb.com".[permanent dead link]
- "Geoff Jenkins 1998 Batting Gamelog". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved November 1, 2008.[permanent dead link]
- "Box Score of Game played on Friday, April 24, 1998 at 3Com Park". Baseball-almanac.com. April 24, 1998. Retrieved April 24, 2013.
- "ESPN – Brewers decline Jenkins' $9M option for 2008 – MLB". Sports.espn.go.com. October 30, 2007. Retrieved April 24, 2013.
- "Former Brewers outfielder Jenkins agrees with Phils". Retrieved April 9, 2008.
- norma48 on March 31, 2009 5:15 pm – Reply. "Phillies Release Jenkins". Zozone.mlblogs.com. Archived from the original on April 5, 2009. Retrieved April 24, 2013.
- "Geoff Jenkins to retire as a Brewer". Retrieved July 4, 2010.
- "Jenkins to announce retirement Friday".