Texas Rangers Spring Training Preview – Who’s catching
By David Cash
Nov 2, 2013; Surprise, AZ, USA; Texas Rangers first baseman Brett Nicholas against the East during the Fall Stars Game at Surprise Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Brett Nicholas is probably name that many Rangers fans do not know, unless you followed the Arizona Fall League. Over the past several years, he has been one of the top players in the AFL and the minor league system, most recently in the Texas League. Nicholas didn’t crack the top 100 prospect list, but he is a solid player on offense and defense.
Some background on Nicholas, he was drafted in the 6th by the Texas Rangers in the 2010 June draft from the University of Missouri Columbia. Since that time Nicholas has played in the minors with the Spokane Indians, Myrtle Beach Pelicans and the Frisco Rough Riders.
Nicholas has played a lot of ball in the minors at first base, but he mainly played catcher in college and has recently been working to make the transition back to the catcher full-time. After the conclusion of the Arizona Fall League, in which he was the Arizona Fall Stars MVP and on a championship team, he went do the Dominican Republic to start training as a catcher.
He commented on this transition:
"“I prefer catching because I want to be apart of every play and every pitch and as a catcher you really are. Catchers are like quarterbacks thinking a few plays ahead or a few pitches ahead and I love being the guy who is doing that.” (David Cash – Nolan Writin)"
Nicholas is known as a power hitter who also gets a lot of doubles. For his career in the minors, he has a batting line of .278/.354/.430/.784 with a total of 91 doubles and 38 home runs over his 4 seasons.
Over the past 2 years he has been at the top of the minors in batting average and doubles. Nicholas is a player that the Texas Rangers could call up at some point if they are in need of a catcher. When and if he ever does get called up, Nicholas will be a wealth of knowledge as a catcher and also a powerful bat to add to an already powerful lineup.