Feb 12, 2016

Former Mets Backup Catcher: Mike Nickeas (2010-2012)

Michael James Nickeas was Born on February 13, 1983 in Vancouver, British Columbia. He is the son of British professional soccer player, Mark Nickeas.

Nickeas grew up in West Lake California & then attended Georgia Tech. University playing on their baseball team for three years. The six foot right handed hitting catcher was originally drafted by the Texas Rangers in 2004. In August of 2006 he was traded to the New York Mets in exchange for Victor Diaz. 

After having success early in his career, especially during the Pan Am games & low levels of the minors, he struggled at both A ball St. Lucie & AA Binghamton. He was at Mets Spring Training as early as 2007, but didn't get near making the team. That year he played for Great Britain in European Baseball Championship making it's All Star team & winning a silver medal. 

In 2008 he hit just .210 in the minors, in 2009 he fell to .164 playing in just twenty games as he suffered a broken finger. In 2010 he hit .283 at AA Binghamton with 15 doubles 5 HRs & 33 RBIs as the clubs main catcher. He was promoted to AAA Buffalo& after seven games got a September call up to the Mets ho still had faith in him. 

Nickeas made his MLB debut on September 4th in Chicago at Wrigley Field, getting the start behind the plate catching Jenrry Mejia. He went 0-2 that day, getting his first hit in his third game at Citi Field against Milwaukee. He played in five games going 2-10.

In 2011 he began the year with the Mets out of Spring Training, finishing up Opening Day behind the plate in the last three innings. He got his first start in Philadelphia in the fourth game of the season, going 0-5. He then hit safely in five of six games and hit his first career HR on April 21st, coming at Citi Field. 

On April 27th he was sent back down to the minors at AAA Buffalo. There he played in 60 games behind Raul Chavez who played 78 games, hit just .199 but threw out 47% of would be base stealers. Nickeas hit .214 while throwing out 40% of would be base stealers. He returned to the Mets at the end of August and got to play in a dozen more games, finishing the year at .189 (10-53) with one HR one doubles & 6 RBIs. 

Behind the plate he posted a perfect .1000 fielding % making no errors in 124 chances, in twenty games. He threw out four of thirteen base runners trying to steal on him. 


In 2012 he caught the third game of the season, going 0-4 in the Mets 7-5 win over Atlanta. On May 5th his two run single off Patrick Corbin, led to a Johan Santana 4-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks. On May 26th, at Citi Field, he hit a grand slam HR off former Met Dale Thayer in a 9-0 Mets win over the San Diego Padres. Nickeas struggled, batting just .168 at the end of June & he was sent down to AAA Buffalo. He hit .364 there in 22 games. 

He was brought back up in September finishing the year batting .174 with one HR three doubles 13 RBIs & a .242 on base %. In the 2013 off season he was traded to Toronto in the R.A. Dickey / Travis d'Arnaud / John Buck deal.

He appeared in just one lone game with the Blue Jays, spending most of his time at AAA Buffalo where he batted just .166. In 2014 he hit .285 at AAA Buffalo in 49 games.

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