Reno, Nev. – Expectations for the reigning Arizona Diamondbacks Minor League Pitcher of the Year were high for right-handed pitcher Ryne Nelson as he stepped into the 2022 season as the Reno Aces Opening Day starter. The Oregon product’s excitement on the season compounded with his promotion to Reno and
Reno, Nev. – Expectations for the reigning Arizona Diamondbacks Minor League Pitcher of the Year were high for right-handed pitcher Ryne Nelson as he stepped into the 2022 season as the Reno Aces Opening Day starter. The Oregon product’s excitement on the season compounded with his promotion to Reno and the opportunity to pitch in his home state for the Henderson, Nevada native.
As the season progressed, he challenged Pacific Coast League hitters with his naturally tough delivery to hit by hiding the ball exceptionally well behind his 6’3” frame. Working daily with former Cy Young Award winner Doug Drabek, he continued to refine his mechanics, which led to a record-breaking year pitching in the Aces’ starting rotation.
Under Drabek’s tutelage, Nelson’s slider became more consistent, combined with his explosive fastball, providing another step forward in development on the mound during the 2022 season. The 24-year-old’s pitches frequently missed opposing hitter’s bats resulting in him earning the Reno Aces single-season record in strikeouts with 128, which was fourth in the PCL.
MLB Pipeline’s No. 8 Top Prospect in the D-backs system delivered four starts where he tallied eight strikeouts, including on June 4 vs. Tacoma, where he kept the Rainiers in check to the tune of two earned runs on four hits and a pair of walks with eight punchouts.
Things on the mound came together beginning on June 22 at Salt Lake. Nelson dominated his final 13 starts as he notched a 6-0 record with a 4.45 ERA (37 ER/74.2 IP) and 59 strikeouts.
As Nelson’s stint with the Aces concluded in September, he led the team and was tied for the league lead with ten wins. He also led the team along with ranking among the league leaders in ERA (5.43), games started (26), innings pitched (136.0), opponent batting average (.264), and WHIP (1.39).
On September 5, Nelson had his contract selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks on September 5th and made his MLB debut in San Diego. He held the Padres scoreless over seven innings and limited the playoff-bound club to four hits with seven strikeouts.
He continued his record-setting year by establishing an Arizona franchise record by recording a 13.1 IP scoreless streak to start his MLB career. Over the final weeks of the 2022 season, Nelson made three starts with the D-backs 1-1 record with a 1.47 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 18-plus innings on the mound.
Reno’s stop in Nelson’s journey allowed him to fine-tune his craft with exceptional results, as this Nevadan left an indelible mark in the Aces’ record book.
The Reno Aces are slated to open the 2023 season at Greater Nevada Field on Friday, March 31st, against the Las Vegas Aviators, Triple-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics. Season Memberships are available via RenoAces.com, texting “MEMBER” to 21003, or calling 775-334-7000.