Born: February 22, 1999
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 223
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Drafted: 2nd Round, 61st Overall, 2020 (Marlins)
How Acquired: Trade (with Marlins)
College: Ball State University
Agent: N/A

Miami selected Nicolas in the 2020 draft with its Competitive Balance Round B pick.  Baseball America rated him 68th in the draft pool on the basis of a mid-90s fastball that has reached triple digits, and an above-average slider.  He’s tried to develop a curve and change, but both remain fringy pitches.  Progress with one or the other will probably determine whether he’s ultimately a starter or reliever.  The Pirates acquired Nicolas in the Jacob Stallings trade.


The pandemic kept Nicolas out of action.  BA rated him 17th in the Marlins’ system after the season.

A+:  3-2-0, 5.28 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 59.2 IP, 3.6 BB/9, 13.0 K/9
AA:  3-2-0, 2.52 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 39.1 IP, 5.7 BB/9, 11.4 K/9

The Marlins assigned Nicolas aggressively to High-A, where he made a dozen starts and one relief appearance.  He had a very high K rate there, but had severe gopher ball problems, allowing 13, or one every four and a half innings.  Five of those home runs came in two bad outings in July.  In his next outing, though, Nicolas fanned ten over six, three-hit innings and Miami moved him up to AA.  He dominated in five starts there before seemingly running out of gas in his last three.  Control was obviously a problem in AA, but opponents batted only .167 and he gave up just three home runs.

The Pirates probably will try Nicolas as a starter, but if he moves to the bullpen it’s not inconceivable that he could reach the majors late in 2022.  They’ve initially assigned him to Altoona.

2022: Minor league contract
Signing Bonus: $1,129,700
MiLB Debut: 2021
MLB Debut:
MiLB FA Eligible: 2026
MLB FA Eligible:
Rule 5 Eligible: 2023
Added to 40-Man:
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
July 11, 2020: Drafted by the Miami Marlins in the 2nd round, 61st overall pick; signed on July 15.
November 29, 2021: Traded by the Miami Marlins with Zach Thompson and Connor Scott to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Jacob Stallings.