Down on the Farm: Brett Nicholas Powering Double-A Frisco This Season
No player in the Texas Rangers' minor league organization may mean more to their team than what Brett Nicholas has meant to the Frisco RoughRiders this season. Nicholas is the only player Texas has in the minors who currently leads his team in every major statistical category.
His .307 average, 15 home runs, 54 RBI and .370 on-base percentage are all tops on the RoughRiders this season. If all goes as well as it has so far for Nicholas, he could find himself in the majors within the next year or so.
His 15 home runs on the year already represent a personal best for him.
After hitting a career-high eight homers last season in 122 games, he has nearly doubled his total this year in just 77 games. By the end of this season, he should also eclipse his career highs in RBI (63) and batting average (.285).
This year marks the first year that Nicholas has been with Frisco, after spending the past two seasons at Single-A Myrtle Beach. The fact that he is posting career numbers in his first season with a higher level of talent could be a clear indication that he is rapidly maturing at the plate and in the field.
When he isn't causing damage with his bat, Nicholas works a nice glove at first base.
He has committed just five errors this season with the RoughRiders, which is good for a .992 fielding percentage. His .992 fielding percentage this year would be a tremendous improvement on last year's .989 percentage he posted at first.
Neil Ramirez was the winning pitcher, Brett Nicholas had a solo homer & the South shut out the North 2-1 in the Texas League All-Star Game!— Frisco RoughRiders (@RidersBaseball) June 26, 2013
Nicholas was named to the Texas League All-Star Game this season, which took place on June 25. In the game, Nicholas went 1-for-4 at the plate, blasting a solo home run in the seventh inning en route to a 6-0 win for the South Texas All-Stars over the North Texas All-Stars.
It may be too early to say when exactly Nicholas could be called up to the majors. If he continues on the tear that he has been on this season, he could be brought up in September when teams can expand to a 40-man roster.
Regardless of when he gets called up, his performance this season should be enough to draw the attention of the Rangers if they need a little added help down the stretch.
All stats and info courtesy of MLB.com, MiLB.com and Baseball-Reference.com
Follow Zachary on Twitter at @ZacharyKrueger
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