Dave Kingman was one of the most fascinating players in Mets’ history. Because he played in one of the Mets’ major down periods – the mid ‘70’s to early ‘80’s, you don’t hear his name mentioned much in Mets’ retrospectives, but for a while, he was clearly the Mets’ biggest star and one of their very few drawing cards, at least at home. If remembered at all, it’s as a low-average power hitter, but Kingman deserves to be remembered for so much more.
Kingman was an outstanding pitcher in High School up through his sophomore year at USC, but coach Rod Dedaux thought he could help the team more as a regular player. Kingman reportedly wanted to stay a pitcher and it seemed at times throughout his career he was angry about something. That might have been it ! Kingman was drafted by the Giants out of USC and rose to the big leagues quickly, mostly because of his prodigious power. At 6’6 with a long sweeping swing, Kingman certainly looked the part. His long legs also gave him above aver