On this day in 1987, the Brewers reached out to an unlikely place to sign a talented player: They signed 17-year-old Brisbane, Australia native Dave Nilsson as an international free agent.
Despite being just 17 years old Nilsson made an immediate splash in the minors, hitting .394/.453/.479 in his first pro season. In 1991 he dominated AA as a 21 year old, and Baseball America listed him as the 29th best prospect in all of baseball before the 1992 season.
Nilsson played 837 games during his eight seasons as a Brewer, splitting time between catcher, first base, DH and the outfield. He was a career .284/.356/.461 hitter in the majors, made the All Star team in his final season in 1999 and might be the best player in Australian baseball history.
With help from the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to:
- 2004-05 Brewer Lyle Overbay, who turns 35.
- 2004-05 Brewer Junior Spivey, who turns 37.
- 1999 Brewer Steve Falteisek, who turns 40.