- Full name Nicholas Raymond Bierbrodt
- Born 05/16/1978 in Tarzana, CA
- Profile Ht.: 6'5" / Wt.: 215 / Bats: L / Throws: L
- School Millikan
- Debut 06/07/2001
- Drafted in the C round (30th overall) by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 1996 (signed for $1,046,000).
Organization Prospect Rankings
Bierbrodt received plenty of notoriety as the team's first-ever draft pick in 1996, then received a bonus that nearly doubled from $525,000 to $1.046 million because of a since-banned clause that was tied to the signings of other first-rounders. Bierbrodt has gotten bigger and stronger without getting too bulky, and he throws in the low 90s. He has a major league curve that impressed scouts last spring. But injuries continue to stunt his development and have hindered his chances of making an impact in the big leagues. He has been called up for brief stints the past two seasons but has yet to throw a big league pitch. Bierbrodt was shut down after two games in the Dominican League this winter with elbow stiffness. That disappointed the Diamondbacks, who hoped he would log enough innings to compete for a bullpen job this spring. He pitched just 15 games in 2000 because of a rib injury. It now looks like a longshot for Bierbrodt to make the Opening Day roster.
Background: Bierbrodt was Arizona's first-ever Draft pick. He signed a unique contract that guaranteed him a $525,000 bonus but linked the final figure to the average of other first-round signings. Bierbrodt eventually received a bonus of $1.046 million and that type of contract was later declared illegal by Major League Baseball. Strengths: Bierbrodt has an ideal pitcher's body and is an excellent athlete for his size. He already has a veteran's touch and feel with his pitches. He mixes a sinking 89-91 mph fastball, a good curveball and a plus changeup, according to hitters and situations. Weaknesses: Bierbrodt's velocity has improved since he signed but he probably will never have plus stuff across the board. He still needs to get ahead of more hitters and cut down on his walks. The Future: Even without the raw stuff that Penny and Patterson possess, Bierbrodt is strongly linked to the two righthanders in the Diamondbacks' plan. He will start 1999 at Double-A El Paso.