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Saturday, October 21, 2023

Lincoln Mikkelsen pitched until past age 40; Played around world

Lincoln Mikkelsen 1990 Erie Sailors card

Lincoln Mikkelsen took to the mound for the AA Harrisburg Senators in April 1995 and impressed, The Carlisle Sentinel wrote.

In six innings of work, he gave up just two hits for the win, The Sentinel wrote.

"We got some great pitching tonight," Harrisburg manager Pat Kelly told The Sentinel afterward. "Mikkelsen was just super. He had good control of all his pitches, and was able to throw his breaking ball for strikes."

Mikkelsen gave that performance in his sixth season as a pro, and after spending part of the previous year in Taiwan. He went on to continue to play for another decade-plus, in independent ball, Taiwan and even Italy, last recorded playing in 2008. He topped out at AA.

Mikkelsen's career began in 1990, signed by independent co-op Erie out of Lamar University in Texas. He played his high school ball in Montague, Mich. Mikkelsen was also credited as Linc Mikkelsen.

Mikkelsen played that year in 1990 at short-season Erie. Mikkelsen went 7-5 on the year, with a 2.34 ERA in 14 starts.

He then moved to affiliated ball, with the Brewers at high-A Stockton for both 1991 and 1992. For 1993, he moved to independent ball at Duluth-Superior. He went 2-6 there, with a 4.19 ERA over 18 outings, 17 starts.

Mikkelsen played 1994 at independent Brainerd - and with Uni-President in Taiwan. He saw 11 outings, six starts in Taiwan. He went 0-5, with a 6.30 ERA.

He recounted his time in Taiwan the next spring, and the pitching mound, to The Palm Beach Daily News.

"Playing in China was difficult," Mikkelsen told The Daily News. "I sort of went there to see what it would be like. The pitching mounds there are completely flat with a hole in front and a hole where your right foot lands after a pitch. I was told the Chinese pitchers like it that way."

After playing that spring with the Expos, Mikkelsen played the year between AA Harrisburg and single-A Albany. He saw 33 outings, five starts on the year, with a 4.32 ERA.

He played 1996 at independent Minot, 1999 in Mexico, then 2001 at independent Camden. He returned to Taiwan in 2003. He continued playing through 2008. He's last recorded as playing that year in Italy, with Grosseto.

In 2007, he helped his Italian team to the league championship, then returned to pitch with independent Somerset and throw six innings of one-run ball.

"He pitched very well," Somerset manager Sparky Lyle told The Central New Jersey Home News afterward. "And the umpire wasn't giving him anything. He was throwing strikes that were (called) balls."

In 2019, he was back home in Michigan, owning and running a bar.

Lincoln Mikkelsen 1990 Erie Sailors card

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:4,247
Made the Majors:1,385-32.6%
Never Made Majors:2,862-67.4%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:562
10+ Seasons in the Minors:347-X

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