Nix, Gleason and Prince return to defend championship
Nix was a member of the Sugar Land Skeeters in the inaugural season (2012) and will become the first Skeeter to play in all six seasons. The 33-year-old right-hander was first drafted in 2005 by the Atlanta Braves (11th round) out of Auburn University where he played with 2015 MVP Josh Donaldson (TOR) during the 2005 season. Nix spent four seasons in the Atlanta Braves system, advancing as high as Triple-A in 2008 with the Richmond Braves. He was signed twice out of Sugar Land, by the Chicago White Sox in 2013 and by the San Diego Padres the following year.
Nix began last season with Triple-A Saltillo (MEX) and Triple-A Aguascalientes (MEX), going 7-8 with 65 strikeouts in 107.0 innings pitched before returning to Sugar Land in August. Last season with the Skeeters he posted a 3.12 ERA and went 2-1 with six starts and 30 strikeouts after going 3-0 with a 2.37 ERA with the club in 2015. Nix made one start in the playoffs with the Skeeters and picked up the win tossing six shutout innings in a 2-0 victory over the Long island Ducks, giving Sugar Land a 2-0 lead in the best of five series for the 2016 Atlantic League Championship. As a Skeeter, Michael has a career record of 20-15 (3.32 ERA) and an overall minor league career record of 83-57 (3.89 ERA).
Eight-year professional baseball veteran Josh Prince returns to the Skeeters after playing his first full season with the club last year. The Lake Charles, Louisiana native began his college career at the University of Texas where he hit .371 and was a freshman All-American before finishing his career back home at Tulane University. While at Tulane he led the nation in stolen bases (48) and hit .353, which helped him to his eventual draft by the Milwaukee Brewers (3rd round) in 2009. Prince spent five seasons in the Brewers system, making his major league debut with the team in 2013.
After splitting time with Double-A Erie in the Detroit Tigers system in 2015, he finished the last two months of the season in the Atlantic League with the Bridgeport Bluefish before joining the Skeeters last year. Prince was a catalyst for the Skeeters as the leadoff hitter last season, owning 24 stolen bases with a career total of 274. He was also an integral part of Sugar Land’s championship, leading the team with nine RBI in six playoff games including a grand slam in Game 3 of the Freedom Division Championship. The 8-6 extra innings win in this game would solidify a three-game sweep against York to put the Skeeters in the championship round for the second time in franchise history. The Skeeters would continue on to sweep the Long Island Ducks and win their first ever ALPB Championship title.
Gleason, 31, returns to the Skeeters after joining the team late in the season last year. The right-hander was originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox (25th round) in 2006 out of Lamar Community College (Lamar, CO) and by the Baltimore Orioles (20th round) the following year, advancing as high as Triple-A with the Norfolk Tides in 2012. In his first full season of professional baseball in 2008, he was 12-2 posting a 2.63 ERA with the Delmarva Shorebirds of the South Atlantic League (BAL). While with the Frederick Keys of the Carolina League (BAL) in 2011, Gleason had a career-high 32 saves in 50 games.
Sean made his Atlantic League debut in 2015 with the Camden Riversharks primarily as a starter. Last year, he played the majority of the season with the New Britain Bees as a reliever before coming to Sugar Land in September.