Former Saints Ace Nick Belzer Signs with Explorers
Sioux City, IA —The Sioux City Explorers today have announced the signing of RHP Nick Belzer to a 2021 contract. Belzer will be entering his third season of professional baseball and his first with Sioux City.
Belzer has spent the bulk of his first two seasons in professional baseball with the St. Paul Saints. He immediately proved he belonged at this level when he joined the Saints in 2019. In just five starts he held a minuscule 1.32 ERA to go along with a 2-0 record. Over 27.1 innings of work he struck out 17 and walked nine with an impressive 0.951 WHIP.
The Bondurant, Iowa native even faced the Sioux City Explorers in his second career professional start and dominated his new squad. Tossing six innings of shutout ball limiting the X’s to just three hits while striking out two en route to picking up the win.
Those numbers, expectedly caught the eye of some major league organizations and the Milwaukee Brewers quickly scooped up the right hander. Belzer finished the remainder of the 2019 season with the Brew Crew in the Arizona League where he went 3-1 with a 3.70 ERA in ten appearances and six starts. He racked up 41 strikeouts in 48.2 innings of work while issuing just 14 free passes.
Despite the pandemic, Belzer found himself back in a Saints uniform in 2020. The 25 year old put together a 4-3 record with a 4.21 ERA in 13 games, six of those being starts. The 6’2, 185 pound Iowan struck out 31 batters over 36.1 frames.
In two albeit short stints with the Saints, Belzer has made a name for himself in the American Association. He’s compiled a 6-3 record in 18 games, 11 starts with a 2.97 ERA. Through 63.2 innings of work, he has struck out 48 batters.
After a season at Des Moines Area CC where he went 9-2 with a 4.23 ERA, Belzer transferred to Minnesota State-Mankato of the NSIC. In two seasons with the Mavericks he went 6-2 in 21 games and 13 starts with a 4.13 ERA. He struck out 108 batters compared to just 31 walks in 85 innings of work.
2017 his junior season was a stand out one. The righty ended up in the top ten of the conference in strikeouts (8th, 77), batters struck out looking (6th, 25), opposing batting average (6th, .230), hits allowed (4th, 51) and runs allowed (7th, 25). That season he went 6-1 with a 3.58 ERA in 13 games, ten starts and 60.1 innings of work.
The summers in between pitching for the Mavericks were spent in the Northwoods League. In three seasons, two of which were spent with the Mankato MoonDogs he went 8-5 in 30 games, 19 starts with 93 strikeouts in 115 innings and a 4.15 ERA.
While at Ankeny High School, Belzer was named Class 4A First Team All-State in 2012, as he helped guide the Hawks to their first state championship in 20 years.
With the addition of RHP Nick Belzer the Sioux City Explorers have signed 13 players to a 2021 contract (7 pitchers, 6 position players).
By Connor Ryan, Sioux City Explorers