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 Minor League News & Autograph Blog Home

Nick Neugebauer Interview
"Boogie Flower Power"

By Paul Gierhart

In 2002 the Milwaukee Brewers are probably going to have the best pitching 1-2 punch with Nick Neugebauer joining Sheets.

There is no doubt Neugebauer has a blazing fastball and an unhittable slider, but with some off season and spring training work with Bob Apodaca (Brewers Pitching Coach) he is adding the change-up and the curve ball to the triple
digit fastball.  Neugebauer added, “…now I am finally starting to get a feel for both of those pitches…but it’s about being consistent with them now”. 

One thing that has plagued Neugebauer in the past is his strikeout to walk ratio.  So far in 67 innings he has 89 strikeouts to 35 walks.  Neugebauer comments, “…my control is my main concern this year. My other stats aren’t that important to me.  In my eyes the minor leagues are all about development.”

At spring training this year, Neugebauer was invited as a non-roster invitee and was able to work a lot with the big league staff.  As he puts it, “I’m starting to get the feel for being a pitcher instead of a thrower…I don’t try to live on my fastball, because as I move up, my off speed pitches will be just as important.”

When asked about his 2000 season compared to this year, Neugebauer answered, “I think I have came a long way since last year. I have a lot better composure…some of the things that have happened this year, if it were last year I would have blew up.”

Neugebauer's Profile

Born: 7/15/80
Bats/Throws: R/R
Height: 6-3
Weight: 220
Acquired: Brewers
Drafted 2nd
Round '98
(Riverside HS, CA)
Key Stats:
(As of 6/12/01)
4-4 W-L
3.07 ERA
67 IP
89 SO

I couldn’t resist asking Neugebauer about his nickname, “Boogie Flower”.  Neugebauer explained, “It started when the Dominicans couldn’t pronounce my name and when they did learn it, they continued to say it wrong all the time.”  “It became a big joke”, added Neugebauer.
During Fall League play, Neugebauer worked on command first. The Brewers told him that they were happy with his slider, so he wasn’t allowed to throw it during Fall League season.  The Brewers wanted him to concentrate on his curve and change.

Instrumental in Neugebauer development has been former Brewer pitcher Mike Cardwell (Huntsville Stars Pitching Coach). Neugebauer commented, “…his best quality as a coach is that he doesn’t sugarcoat anything and he tell me what I want to hear.”

Neugebauer has found with keeping the ball around the strike zone, and getting ahead of the count, batters have become more defensive and find it hard to leave the high fastball alone.

When ask what part his family has played in his baseball career, Neugebauer said, “They have been the most important people in my career…they are behind me 100% and that’s good to know.”  Neugebauer continued, “My father has been the best for me through all this because he is so strong.  He has shown me where hard work can get me and I appreciate all that he does for me…and my mother, brother all my family are behind me.”

When asked if there was anything outside of baseball, he would like to tell his fans about himself, Neugebauer humbly answered, “I am just a normal guy I guess, very approachable…so if anybody out there sees me at a game, don’t be afraid to say Hello!”


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