In 2006, Gibson's senior year at Greenfield Central High School in Indiana, he committed to the University of Missouri.
In 2006, Kyle passed up the Phillies offers after they chose him in the 26th round of the draft. He chose to go to the University of Missouri. Gibson arrived at Missouri as a highly touted bean-pole out of Greenfield High in Indiana, where he was the top prep prospect in the state heading into the 2006 draft.
In 2007, pitching for Falmouth in the Cape Cod League, Gibson put up a 1.17 ERA.
In 2008, Kyle led Team USA with five victories.
Kyle exhibits great makeup. He says he is very thankful to God for his family and the ability he has been blessed with.
- Gibson was a Reds fan growing up, but switched to the Cubs because Jake Fox, who also grew up in Greenfield, was on the team.
Kyle organized a silent auction of sports memorabilia that raised $9,000 for the family of a childhood friend who died in 2006 from lymphatic cancer.
In 2009, Gibson was 10-3, 3.47 ERA with 123 strikeouts and only 18 walks in 99 innings for the University of Missouri.
In 2009, Gibson got drafted by the Twins (see Transactions below).
In 2010, Baseball America rated Gibson as the third best prospect in the Twins organization. But in the winter before 2011 spring training, they had Kyle as the #1 prospect in the Twins' farm system.
They dropped Gibson down to #8 in the offseason before 2012 spring camps opened. But he was at 4th-best in the winter before 2013 Spring Training.
In 2010, the Twins named Kyle their Minor League Pitcher of the Year after he combined to go 11-6 with a 2.96 ERA for Ft. Myers, New Britain, and Triple-A Rochester. He walked 39 and struck out 126 in 26 starts.
In 2016, Gibson has changed his diet. He has cut out refined sugar and egg yolks. His wife, whom he met while at the University of Missouri, studied exercise and nutrition in college and has helped him create a healthy meal plan. High cholesterol runs in his family.
"I'm still eating fruits and sugar that occurs naturally, but otherwise, I'm cutting out extra sugar," Gibson said. "And I've had high cholesterol the last couple years. Elizabeth told me I had to do something about it, so I've cut out egg yolks. I love scrambled eggs, but every egg yolk has like 300 milligrams of cholesterol. So I've been cutting out egg yolks and skipping syrup on pancakes. Just trying to mash up fruit or eat yogurt." (Bollinger - MLB.com - 2/29/2016)
Kyle is always classy and upbeat. He is a guy who has used his success as a platform to help others.
December 23, 2016: The holidays are always a busy time for Kyle and his wife, Elizabeth, who make their offseason home in Fort Myers, Fla. But this year is even more hectic, as Elizabeth is due with their second child on December 29. The Gibsons usually travel to Indiana to see his side of the family or Missouri for her side, but this year they're staying at home for the first time with their daughter, Hayden, who turns three in March. Kyle spoke with MLB.com about the holidays, this past season and the 2017 season.
MLB.com: What's a typical Christmas like for you and your family? What's the plan this year?
Gibson: This year is a little bit different. Elizabeth, Hayden and I normally travel to see her family or my family. We usually pick one of them to spend Christmas with and the other one to spend Thanksgiving with. But with a little one coming at the end of December, we'll be home for our first Christmas at the Gibson household here in Fort Myers. We've decorated and plan on being home here for the first time. So we're pretty excited.
MLB.com: So what it's like with your wife being due so soon after Christmas?
Gibson: There's a little bit of anxiety mixed in with the Christmas joy this year. I'm just hoping she makes it past Christmas, really. Hopefully, we can get through the Christmas festivities before she has the baby. But it's pretty exciting and another great gift and something to look forward to right after Christmas.
MLB.com: What was Christmas like growing up in Greenfield, Indiana?
Gibson: It was pretty special. All of our relatives lived within 10 minutes. We lived right next to my mom's parents and were only like 10 minutes from my dad's parents. Christmas Eve we'd spend the night with my dad's parents and Christmas Day, we'd literally walk 50 feet across the yard to my mom's mom and dad's. We'd do lunch there for Christmas and it would go into dinner with everybody bringing gifts and food. It was always cool walking up super early and running into my parents' room with my sister to wake them up and head downstairs.
MLB.com: Any particular Christmas memories stand out? Gibson: When I was 17 years old, I was probably the only one of my friends who didn't have a PlayStation or a Nintendo or anything like that. But when I was 17, my parents got my first PlayStation, the PlayStation 2. And I just freaked out. I couldn't believe it because my dad was very much into the old-school about not playing video games and going outside instead. It's not like they withheld anything from me, but we had six acres with a pond, trampoline and a basketball hoop. So played outside instead of being in front of the TV. But when I finally got that, I was pretty pumped and ran around screaming. (R Bollinger - MLB.com - December 23, 2016)
2018: Gibson had the highest current WAR (9.3) of any Twins player.
December 6, 2019: Pitching in the Major Leagues is tough enough without having to deal with the misery of E. coli and ulcerative colitis. That’s what Kyle had to deal with last season with the Twins after getting hit hard by the condition during an annual missions trip to the Dominican Republic.
Considering what he went though, it seems remarkable Gibson was able to throw 160 innings over his 29 starts and win 13 games while helping the Twins capture the AL Central title last season, 2019.
The Rangers trust Gibson will be able to overcome his issues and become a reliable No. 3-4 starter in their rotation.
“He has a tremendous reputation around the game as a great teammate and a competitor,” Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. “He and his wife Elizabeth have a great reputation for giving back to the community. A lot of things that we like and want to be about and are consistent with our culture.”
In 2019, Gibson was the Twins' 2019 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. In 2017, he had won the team's Community Service Award. He and his wife have also sponsored a young girl in the Dominican Republic for the past nine years.
“We have been going down there every year to visit her and the family, just love on her and spend some time with her,” Gibson said. “Those are life changing events. You go down and see the need down there, it’s eye-opening. It kept my wife and I going back every single year.”
“This past year we went down on New Year’s Day and came back with E. coli. I picked up E. coli somewhere between the Dominican and Haiti and had E. coli for 3 1/2 weeks. That’s what triggered my stomach stuff and then I found out in February I had developed ulcerative colitis in correlation with the E. coli.”
It was not good timing for a pitcher who seemed to have his career headed in the right direction. In 2009, Gibson was the No. 22 overall pick of the Twins out of the University of Missouri. And he had two solid seasons in 2014 and 2015. In 2016, he was limited to 25 starts because of a strained right shoulder and finished 6-11 with a 5.07 ERA and a 1.56 WHIP.
Gibson spent that offseason working on mechanical and delivery adjustments. It took a couple trips to the Minor Leagues to get everything in sync, but he finished strong that season, going 7-3 with a 3.76 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP in his final 13 starts.
In 2018, Gibson made 32 starts and was 10-13 with a career low 3.62 ERA. His 196 innings were a career high and he struck out nine batters per nine innings. That was up from 5.37 strikeouts per nine innings in 2014, his first full season in the Majors.
Then came E. coli and ulcerative colitis.
“In Spring Training we found the right medication,” Gibson said. “I was feeling strong when the season started. Then, I think whether it was the stress to the season or my diet changes, eating on the road and stuff, about mid-May, it started getting worse and the symptoms started creeping back in.
“The hardest part was just before the All-Star break. I wasn’t sleeping well. I was getting up with a bloated stomach and gas and having to go to the bathroom five or six times a night. Right at the beginning of September, I told our trainers I can’t do this anymore.”
Gibson spent 10 days on the injured list. He was on the Twins postseason roster against the Yankees, but was not given a starting assignment. He reached out to others for help. He spoke with Jake Diekman, the former Rangers reliever who spent much of his adult life dealing with ulcerative colitis until finally having multiple surgeries in 2017.
Gibson underwent examination at the Cleveland Clinic after the season, underwent a colonoscopy and was given new medication. So far everything has worked well.
“I have been trending that way so that’s good,” Gibson said. “When you have progress going in the right direction, it feels like a brand new day. I am feeling better and better each week.”
The Rangers have told Gibson they won’t push him to be ready for Opening Day. They have much experience in this area and Gibson met with their medical staff before signing. Gibson was especially impressed with team dietician Stephanie Fernandes.
“First and foremost, if I’m not feeling good and able to compete, I’m not going to be the guy that I think I can be,” Gibson said. “That was a big factor in getting to a place I felt could help me stay healthy and keep me on the right track.”
But he is a durable righthander with a 93 mile per hour fastball and a plus slider. He can also work in a curveball and changeup for a four-pitch mix. His ground-ball ratio of 52.6 percent is the seventh-highest over the past six years and his 136 double plays induced were the most in the Majors in that stretch.
“He has always been a pretty good starter,” Daniels said. “A lot of things you like from a starting pitcher. He has a lot of ways to get hitters out. We are excited to have him in the mix.” (TR Sullivan - MLB.com - December 6, 2019)
On June 29, 2013, Kyle made his Major League debut against the Royals at Target Field in Minnesota. He’ll make his first Opening Day start against the Royals as well, this time at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.
“Having never played on Opening Day, it's something that you think a lot about as a player, wanting to be involved in that first game,” Gibson said. “There's just something cool about being on the line, something cool about the anthem that day. Just everybody being out there and the whole team gets recognized at the start of a new year. You get a fresh start.”
A University of Missouri alumnus, Gibson said Kansas City is one of his favorite places to pitch because of how close it is to family. He has a number of family members coming to Opening Day to watch him pitch, including his wife and kids, his in-laws and even a college roommate that lives in the area. Though it won’t be the 60-70 people he had during his Major League debut, Gibson said he's enjoyed being able to celebrate big moments with those close to him.
“The moments before and after the game are really special,” Gibson said. “I think it ends up being a combination of efforts by a lot of people. It ends up being that extra moment where you get to say thank you to a lot of people who probably helped you get there. It really makes you realize how fortunate you are when you get that chance to celebrate that with people.” (Landry - mlb.com - 3/30/2021) (Editor's note: Not a happy ending. Gibson did not make it through the first inning, and the Rangers lost to the Royals 14-10.)
July 2021: Gibson was chosen to pitch in the All-Star Game.
June 2009: The Twins chose Kyle with their #1 pick. And they signed him to a $1.8 million bonus about 10 minutes before the midnight deadline on August 17. The scout who signed him was J.R. DeMercurio.
January 2017: Gibson and the Twins agreed on a one-year, $2.9 million pact for 2017.
January 11, 2019: Kyle and the Twins avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year deal for $8.1 million.
October 31, 2019; Kyle chose free agency.
November 27, 2019: The Rangers agreed to a three-year, $30 million contract with Gibson.
Gibson will receive $11 million in 2020, $10 million in 2021, and $7 million in 2022. There is another $3 million in incentives.
- July 30, 2021: The Rangers traded RHP Kyle Gibson, RHP Ian Kennedy, RHP Hans Crouse and cash to the Phillies for RHP Spencer Howard, RHP Kevin Gowdy and RHP Josh Gessner.