"There was a quote written about me during my second year in the minors that I'll never forget. It was a story about all minor leaguers and how scouts projected the progress of their careers. Mine said at best I would be a fringe big leaguer, if I ever made it. To me, that was the greatest quote I ever read about myself. Fringe is usually not a compliment in pro ball, but in my eyes, it meant I could be in the big leagues one day.
"I have so many individuals to thank for such a wonderful time in my life. Special thanks to Pat Jones who drafted me and Dale Sutherland, who was responsible for me being traded to the Angels. Along with the managers, coaches, training staffs, clubhouse personnel and members of the front office throughout my career, my thanks and appreciation. To my teammates, I will cherish every aspect of what we went through together. And to Arte Moreno and the Angels, thank you for allowing me this special opportunity to join the organization one final time!
"Chone was a player who absolutely loved to play the game," said Angels Manager Mike Scioscia. "He played the game aggressively and fearlessly. That's why he was a big part of what we did in 2002 and up through 2009. For not ever having really played third base, getting the opportunity and then saying yes I'll play and doing so at such a high level, shows you how competitive what a great player he was. Whether we put him in to steal a base in a key situation or he was playing every day third base, Chone took the challenge to heart and put everything he had into it. I wish Chone and his family the very best ahead."
Born January 22, 1978 in Leary, GA, Figgins attended Brandon High School in Brandon, FL, where he was a third-team High School All-American as a senior.
Drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the fourth round of the 1997 MLB Amateur Draft, Figgins would remain part of the Colorado farm system until July, 2001 when he was traded to the Angels for Kimera Bartee. A year later he spent most of the season with the Angels Triple-A affiliate in Salt Lake City, hitting .305 with 39 steals before being added to the roster in August, 2002. He would record the first of his 1,298 hits on Sept. 15, 2002, a single off Aaron Myette of the Texas Rangers.
Figgins became a regular for the Angels in 2004. He would go on to register a .291 average (1045/3585) with 31 HR, 341 RBI, 596 R and a club-record 280 stolen bases. Including three seasons with Seattle and part of the 2014 campaign with the Dodgers, Figgins amassed a final career average of .276 (1298/4701) with 35 HR, 341 RBI, 708 R and 341 SB in 1,282 games.
On Sept. 16, 2006 he became the fifth Angel to hit for the cycle, accomplishing the feat in Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Against Oakland Sept. 29 that same season, he registered his first career inside-the-park home run. It was one of three such hits that season for the Angels, the most in club history.
For the Angels, Figgins played third base, short and second base, and each of the three outfield positions. In June, 2007, he recorded a team-record 53 hits for a month. That same month he tied an American League record for most hits in a nine-inning game with six, June 18th against Houston, including a walk-off triple.