January 12, 1970 |
|MLB: September 8, 1993 for the Florida Marlins|
|NPB: 1997 for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters|
|Last professional appearance|
|MLB: September 29, 1996 for the Cleveland Indians|
|NPB: 2002 for the Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes|
|Runs batted in||5|
|Runs batted in||337|
Nigel Edward Wilson (born January 12, 1970) is a Canadian former Major League Baseball player from Oshawa, Ontario. He played for the Florida Marlins, Cincinnati Reds, and Cleveland Indians. He also spent six highly successful seasons in Nippon Professional Baseball with the Nippon Ham Fighters and Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes.
Wilson signed with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1987 as an amateur free agent. He was promoted as high as Double-A with the Blue Jays. Wilson was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the 1992 MLB Expansion Draft as their first pick (second overall, behind David Nied by the Colorado Rockies).
Wilson played a total of 22 major league games with the Marlins (1993), Cincinnati Reds (1995), and Cleveland Indians (1996). He failed to get a hit as either a Marlin or a Red, going 0-for-23 in his time with these teams, with 15 strikeouts and no walks or HBPs. After an 0-for-2 start with the Indians (with 1 strikeout), Wilson recorded his first major league hit in his 26th at bat. His major league career ended shortly thereafter; Wilson retired with 3 MLB hits in total.
In 1997, he joined the Nippon Ham Fighters of the Japanese Pacific League after being released from the Indians. On June 21, 1997, he hit home runs in 4 consecutive at bats, becoming only the second player in Japanese baseball history to reach this mark after Sadaharu Oh. He ended the season with a league-leading 37 home runs.
In 1998, he greatly improved his clutch hitting, leading the league with 33 home runs and 128 RBIs to win the Best Nine Award for designated hitter. In 1999, he played only 6 games due to a knee injury, but the team decided not to release him at the end of the season. The team's decision proved to be correct, as Wilson rebounded in 2000, hitting 37 home runs with 89 RBIs to win his second Best Nine Award.
Wilson sustained another injury in 2001, and left the team after playing only 34 games that year. He was picked up by the Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes the following year, but could not repeat his earlier success. He left Japan at the end of 2002, and signed a minor league contract with the New York Yankees organization, but did not make it into a major league roster.
Wilson's father was a cricket player from Trinidad. Wilson resides in Ajax, Ontario with his wife, Natalie Wilson and the their three children, Morgan, Paris and Quinton. He has an older daughter LaToya from a previous relationship, she is a YouTube personality.
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
- Nippon Professional Baseball career statistics from Japanesebaseball.com