5. Dave Nilsson
Years as a Brewer: 1992-1999
Nilsson spent his entire eight-year MLB career in Milwaukee where he had a career batting average of .284 with 470 RBIs and an OPS of .817. His career started off relatively slowly compared to how he finished up due to injuries, where he spent some time on the disabled list or in the minors on rehab assignments.
An unusual aspect of his career was that during the MLB offseason, he played in the Australian Baseball League for a few seasons. You have to wonder that if playing year round as Nilsson did, contributed to the injuries that he suffered from and shortened his career.
However, one thing you couldn’t argue was Nilsson’s production on the field for the Brewers. His breakout year came in 1996 where he posted career highs in batting average with .331 and 84 RBIs. Nilsson also knocked 13 balls out of the park that season.
As a Brewer he was a one time All-Star and, surprisingly, it wasn’t that 1996 season. His time finally came in 1999, his last season with the team where he posted a batting average of .309, a career high 21 home runs, 62 RBIs, and an incredible OPS of .954.
Nilsson was also very efficient defensively. He posted a career .988 fielding percentage as a catcher and only had 19 errors recorded over his career at catcher. Whether it was at the plate hitting or behind the plate, Nilsson got the job done.
One of Nilsson’s strengths was his ability to play multiple positions. In addition to catcher, he also played outfield, first base, and DH. This ability to play multiple positions only allowed him to play in 309 games as catcher for Milwaukee. So Nilsson starts off our countdown at #5.
He was solid with the bat and a heck of a defender during his time here but due to injuries and his ability to play multiple positions, his time at catcher was limited compared to the others on the list. But when he was behind home plate, he sure was effective.