Nick Allgeyer was not scored upon in 10 of his 15 outings with the C’s in 2018.
2018 Vancouver Canadians pitcher Nick Allgeyer takes his turn on the mound in this episode of C’s Chat.
The Toronto Blue Jays took the 6-foot-3, 210 pound lefthander out of the University of Iowa in round 12 of the 2018 Major League Baseball draft. Allgeyer says he was with his Dad at the time of his selection.
“I was in St. Louis. It was just me and my Dad. I was out of town. I think my sister (Liz) was at work and my brother (Jason) might have been working as well. We were sitting on the couch watching How I Met Your Mother. That’s my favourite show. We were kind of watching that. I had (the draft) on my computer. I had the picks loaded up on my computer. My Dad just screamed, ‘Hey, your name is on the board now!’ That’s how we found out.
We didn’t really get a call before anything. I got a call, probably like 15 seconds after I got picked. Then we went and played golf in the afternoon.(Laughs) After I got picked, I went and threw a little bit and just did all my daily throwing stuff and then we played golf in the afternoon.”
Allgeyer says being taken in the 12th round was in his range of expected outcomes.
“What I heard for the most part was between eight and 15 so it fit right in to where I was looking to go and where I thought I was going to go. It was a little bit of anxiety when it didn’t happen in eight to 10 on the second day but it all worked out and the rest is history.”
The 22 year-old St. Louis native says the hometown Cardinals were his favourite team but he was just glad to be drafted.
“Growing up, I was a Cardinals fan. My Dad works for FOX Sports so he does a little bit of advertising and sales with them so I’ve been to a few games. I just wanted to play professional baseball and Toronto was the organization that picked me and I couldn’t have been happier.”
Allgeyer says it was a whirlwind from the time he was drafted to the time he reported to Florida to join the Blue Jays organization.
“I felt the first part went pretty quick, like getting shipped off to Dunedin, but it was a dream come true and it was something that was a fun quick (turnaround). I got to go down to Dunedin for a week and do that mini-camp and that was awesome and then I came up to Vancouver. This is a fantastic city and I love everything about it.”
Going to Vancouver was Allgeyer’s first time in Canada but he said he heard a lot about what life was like in the Great White North.
“I had not been to Canada but my roommate of three years in college was from Toronto. I knew about Toronto and I knew a little bit about Canada just from him but I’ve never visited. (Going to Vancouver) was my first time here.”
Nick Allgeyer struck out four batters over two scoreless innings for the C’s during its 2018 home opener against Everett June 20.
Allgeyer was an All-State and Metro Conference Player of the Year during his senior year on the diamond but he was a three-sport athlete at St. John Vianney High in St. Louis. Football was definitely in his genes as his father Ken was an offensive lineman for the Iowa Hawkeyes from 1986-1990 while his uncles Dan Allgeyer (1987-1989) and Kevin Allgeyer (2002) suited up for the Central Missouri Mules.
The younger Allgeyer played on both sides of the ball on the gridiron but he said it was an easy choice to decide which sport to pursue.
“I was better at baseball than I was at football (laughs). I played a little bit of quarterback and receiver in my earlier years but my junior and senior years, I was more of a quarterback and then some safety and kick return/punt return later on in my high school years.”
Even though his hometown of St. Louis no longer has an NFL team, Allgeyer is more concerned about college football and the local NHL team.
“In football, I go with the Hawkeyes. I’m more of a hockey guy, a big (St. Louis) Blues fan.”
Nick Allgeyer won seven of his 11 decisions with a 2.75 earned run average during his college career.
Pitching in Iowa
Allgeyer was a member of the All-Big Ten Conference team and won two-Big Ten Pitcher of the Week awards in April during his redshirt junior year in 2018. He pitched at least five innings in all of his 15 starts and 13 of them were quality outings. Before this season, Allgeyer made all but one of his appearances for the Hawkeyes out of the bullpen.
Allgeyer says following in his father’s footsteps was not the only reason he decided to go to the University of Iowa.
“Yes and no. My Dad went there and he played football so I kind of had been going there and going to the games for a while. That was the first school that offered me (a scholarship) for baseball and that’s what I wanted to do because I was comfortable with it. It was an awesome experience going to the University of Iowa.”
Allgeyer hopes he can follow in the footsteps of former Vancouver Canadian and Iowa Hawkeyes southpaw Matt Dermody.
“I met him in Dunedin but I wouldn’t say that I ‘know him, know him,” but I know he went to Iowa and he was there before me. It’s kind of cool to see how he progressed and that’s something to strive for. He’s a lefty so he’s someone I look up to and would love to do the same thing he’s done in his career.”
Allgeyer wound up redshirting as a junior with the Iowa Hawkeyes after missing all of 2017 due to Tommy John surgery on his left elbow. Instead of viewing the injury as adversity, he viewed it as an opportunity.
“I guess you could use the word adversity. I didn’t really think of it as adversity. I kind of thought of it as something to where I was going to be able to work on getting my mobility better, getting strong in the weight room and getting everything to where I wanted it to be to be a professional baseball player because when I came in (to my) freshman year, professional baseball wasn’t really on my mind. I was a mid-80’s (miles per hour) pitcher and kind of gained a little bit (more velocity) my sophomore year and then gained a little bit more going into my junior year and then tore my UCL (Ulnar Collateral Ligament).
I kind of saw a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel with the Tommy John surgery but to work on my mobility, that was probably the biggest thing that I got out of surgery was working on my hip mobility, getting strong in the weight room and have my shoulder be where it needs to be and my elbow be where it needs to be at a strength standpoint.
That’s kind of how I took it. I did rehab five, six, seven times a week and lifted four times a week so that was kind of my practice as I was not up to being able to play in games but I got to train for a year pretty much. I thought that was a huge part of my recovery.”
Allgeyer recalls the exact moment when his elbow was not feeling right.
“It was during a live set in the fall of 2016, September 2016, I was throwing to hitters. I threw a slider and it didn’t necessarily pop, it just kind of tingled and kind of went numb down my arm. I tried to throw like eight more pitches and my velo went way down and I didn’t throw a single strike. I went to the training room and got an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging scan) and (the UCL) was completely torn.”
Allgeyer did get to pitch in 2017 with the Hawkeyes at the World University Games in Taiwan in late August. He allowed just one run in 4-2/3 innings over two relief appearances, striking out six and walking one, as he helped Iowa win the silver medal.
Nick Allgeyer posted a 1.54 earned run average over his six abbreviated starts with Vancouver in 2018.
Allgeyer says he throws the standard four pitches.
“I throw a fastball, changeup, slider and curveball. I like to work fastball, changeup because those are the two best tunneling pitches. The biggest thing I’ve been working on is the breaking ball with the harder slider and softer curveball. I’m trying to get those more consistent, more in control and being in better command of them. I throw both the four-seam fastball and a four-seam changeup. I don’t really throw any two-seams or any cutters.”
Allgeyer is fine with starting and relieving but he does have a preference.
“If I had to pick one, I would choose starting just because I got a pretty in-depth routine that I like to do with the stretching and mobility and long toss and all that kind of different (exercises) that I like to do. It’s easier to do when I start but when I’m out there on the mound, it doesn’t matter if I coming out of the pen or starting. If I had to choose, I would choose starting.”
It was a little bit of an adjustment when I went to the bullpen at the start because I hadn’t been in the bullpen since my sophomore year so it was 2-1/2 years ago in college to where I had a different routine for that. I think I have a pretty good routine for a starter.”
Nick Allgeyer began his pro career with nine straight outings in relief before moving to the C’s rotation in 2018.
Allgeyer got to work with C’s pitching coach Jim Czajkowski in 2018 and felt he was a great resource to lean on.
“One of the first things he told us was he’s not going to change anything for us right now because we just got out of college and he’s going to let us do what we did to get here. I’ve kind of taken him to the side a little bit and asked him what his opinion is on some things and what he sees with my delivery and mechanics and stuff. He’s been very helpful for that and I’m really appreciative of that.
He’s not completely in-depth with a lot of the new guys just because we’re new and he wants to let us do what we have been doing but he’s always there when you want to ask a question and when you want his opinion.”
Speaking to Allgeyer in the midst of the 2018 season, his goal was to make it to the mound everytime he was called upon. From that standpoint, his year was a success.
“I think the main goal is to stay healthy and get through the season. It’s my first year back so I want to stay healthy. We’re out here seven days a week almost, that’s a lot more than college so keeping the body healthy along with the arm. The recovery you got to do every day for arm care and all that.
From a pitching standpoint, try to develop more command with my slider and curveball. That’s something I like to work on every day. Just pitch development, being able to throw strikes. Fastball command is a big thing in this organization and that’s one thing I pride myself on is throwing a lot of strikes.”
Allgeyer finished the season with a 2.73 earned run average over 26-1/3 innings in which he struck out 31 batters and walked eight. He collected his first professional save against Hillsboro July 22. He limited Northwest League hitters to a .196 batting average and had a WHIP of 1.03.
Thanks again to Nick Allgeyer for taking part in the latest chapter of C’s Chat. You can follow him on Twitter @Nick__Allgeyer. Another thank you goes out to C’s Media Relations Coordinator Sharlene Canning for setting up the chat.