March 27, 1932|
Laurinburg, North Carolina
|Died: July 4, 2011
|Batted: Left||Threw: Right|
|April 19, 1956 for the Milwaukee Braves|
|Last MLB appearance|
|October 2, 1966 for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
|Runs batted in||499|
|Career highlights and awards|
John Wesley Covington (March 27, 1932 – July 4, 2011) was a left fielder in Major League Baseball who played from 1956 through 1966 for the Milwaukee Braves, Chicago White Sox, Kansas City Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers. Listed at 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m), 205 lb, he batted left-handed and threw right-handed.
Covington hit .284 with 21 home runs and drove in 65 runs in just 96 games over the second half of the 1957 season. His inspired play continued in the Series against the New York Yankees, highlighted by two defensive gems that helped preserve wins for Lew Burdette.
In Game 2, Covington pulled off an improbable backhanded stab to take an extra-base hit away from Bobby Shantz, and in Game 5 he crashed into the fence to steal a homer from Gil McDougald. He also drove in Joe Adcock for what would prove to be the winning run in Game 2, while the Braves won the Series in seven games.
In an 11-year career, Covington was a .279 hitter with 131 homers and 499 runs batted in, with a .337 on base percentage and a .466 slugging percentage in 1,075 games. His best season came in 1958, when he posted career numbers in average (.330), home runs (24) and RBI (74).
Covington also was one of a handful of major leaguers to have played for four different teams in one season, after he played for the Braves, White Sox, Athletics and Phillies in the 1961 season.(See July 30, 2004 in baseball)
Following his baseball career, Covington moved to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and operated a sporting goods business. He later became an advertising manager for the Edmonton Sun newspaper, a position he held for nearly 20 years. In addition to his duties with the Sun, he was involved in youth charity work in the Alberta capital.
When the Edmonton Trappers joined the Pacific Coast League in the early 1980s, Covington returned to baseball as a promotions consultant and special ambassador for the club. In 2003, at the invitation of the Braves Historical Association, Covington returned to Milwaukee for the first time in 40 years.
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