Nils Hartkopf

From BR Bullpen

Nils Hartkopf.jpg

Nils Hartkopf

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 11", Weight 187 lb.

Nils Hartkopf has played for the German national team. In 2003, he hit .357/.455/.393 as a young backup at SS to Dominik Wulf on the Solingen Alligators. He was 2 for 13 with two walks, 2 runs and 2 RBI in the 2003 European Junior Championship. During 2004, he batted .253/.341/.267 as Solingen's primary third baseman. In '05, the teen hit .233/.288/.260 as a bench player for the Alligators and was 2-0 with four saves and a 2.91 ERA on the mound. He tied Eugen Heilmann for second in the northern Bundesliga-1 in saves.

In 2006, Nils produced at a .359/.438/.474 rate and was 0-1 with a save and a 2.63 ERA; he was Solingen's main third baseman. He then hit .303 in the postseason as the Alligators went on to win their first pennant. The next year, Hartkopf moved to the Mainz Athletics and batted .220/.319/.317 while fielding just .823; on the hill, he was 5-1 with two saves and a 3.40 ERA. He was 7th in the southern Bundesliga-1 in ERA, 7th in strikeouts (53 in 53 IP), tied for 8th in wins, tied for 4th in saves, fourth in K/IP and 8th in WHIP (1.43). He then hit .304/.418/.413 in the playoffs to help Mainz win the title, his second straight Bundesliga pennant.

Hartkopf represented Germany in the 2007 Baseball World Cup, playing one inning at shortstop behind Andy Janzen and pitching one game, in which he allowed a single, 2 doubles, a homer and a walk while retiring only two batters against Venezuela. Nils had Germany's second-highest ERA in the Cup, slightly better than Andre Hughes.

Hartkopf was awful in the 2008 European Cup, going 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA, fielding .864 and going 2 for 19 at the plate (albeit with a homer and a team-best 3 RBI for Mainz). He had a poor regular season offensively, hitting .240/.341/.290 for Mainz, though he led all third basemen with a 1.000 fielding percentage (32 chances). He had a 5-2, 2.44 record as a pitcher, again being better on the mound than at the plate. He tied Daniel Hayes for 9th int he southern Bundesliga-1 in walks drawn (16); as a pitcher, he was among the leaders in ERA (5th, 2nd to Philipp Hoffschild among native-born Germans), strikeouts (4th with 71 in only 51 2/3 IP), wins (tied for 7th with Hoffschild and Dirk Fries), strikeouts/inning (1st), WHIP (1.06, 4th, 2nd to Hoffschild among native Germans) and opponent average (.197, 4th, 2nd to Hoffschild among native Germans).

Nils is on Germany's preliminary 40-man roster for the 2009 Baseball World Cup.