Jacob Nottingham had a strong 2018. Despite some injuries, he hit .281/.347/.528 with 10 homers, one short of his single-season high. Add on his Major League debut, and it was a season any player could be happy with. Despite coming back to the majors for a few games in 2019, he didn’t exactly build on last year’s success.
Nottingham played in just 83 games for the San Antonio Missions this season. Playing time was hard to come by with veteran catcher David Freitas hitting the crap out of the ball. During that time, Nottingham hit just .231/.313/.355, the second lowest slugging percentage of his career after his first full season in the Milwaukee Brewers farm.
When you go digging for hints of promise in his season, it’s hard to find much to be hopeful for. Nottingham did increase his line drive rate over last season, but also saw a dip in fly ball and increase in infield fly ball rates. He continues to pull the ball, but no more than he has most of his career. It was strictly a bad performance for Nottingham.
Thankfully, his defense continues to improve, making him a serviceable backup candidate. He has one more minor league option remaining and figures to continue as the third man at catcher for at least another season. Nottingham will be 25 on April 3rd, and he will need to show some of the skills that prompted the Brewers to trade for him in 2016 if he wants a more prominent role in the future.