Mississinewa High School, Armstrong State College
Mike graduated from Mississinewa High School in 1985. He was an all-conference athlete in football, basketball, and baseball. In Mitchener’s senior year, he led Mississinewa to a conference championship in football, a winning season in basketball for the first time in 20 years, and a state-ranked baseball team.
In addition to his success on the field of play, Mitchener was a classic example of the student/athlete. He graduated Mississinewa with a 3.96 GPA, which ranked him sixth in his graduating class.
Upon graduation from Mississinewa, Mitchener took a full scholarship to Armstrong State College in Savannah, Georgia where he was on a dual athletic scholarship for basketball and baseball. Mitchener played one year of NCAA Division 1 basketball and then he elected to focus on his baseball career.
At Armstrong, Mitchener was the freshman of the year in baseball for his school. Competing in the NCAA Division 1 Big South Conference, Mitchener held his own as he was among the league leaders in both home runs and in saves as a freshman. Mitchener’s sophomore year defined him as a baseball player. Again, competing in NCAA Division 1, Mitchener led the country in RBIs and ended up breaking a long-standing single-season record. His 98 RBIs in a 62 game season set a national record that stood for over 10 years. Entering into his junior year, Mitchener had garnered the attention of several Major League professional teams for both his hitting ability and his pitching ability. Upon completion of his junior year at Armstrong, Mitchener had led his team to the College World Series, led the nation for the second year in RBIs, and led his team, for the third year, in saves as a pitcher. Mitchener was selected as the college’s first first-team All-American award winner as a designated hitter.
In the 1988 Major League Baseball Professional Draft, Mitchener was selected by the Chicago White Sox in the 3rd round. Forgoing his senior year in college, Mitchener signed with the White Sox and spent three seasons as a pitcher. In his second season, Michener was assigned to the South Bend White Sox franchise. He was the first Indiana born player to play for this team. In that season in 1989, Mitchener was a part of the team that won the Midwest League Title and had the best professional baseball record of any professional baseball team in the country.
Mitchener was honored by his college in 1996 by being selected to the Armstrong Hall of Fame. 5 years later, Mitchener had his jersey number 25 retired, becoming only the second player to have his jersey retired in 75 years at the college.Mike, a father of four children, currently lives in Ormond Beach, Florida with his wife Robin.