Note: Bob Nelson redirects here; for umpire Bob Nelson, click here
Robert Sidney Nelson
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 3", Weight 220 lb.
- High School W. H. Adamson High School
- Debut June 22, 1955
- Final Game June 14, 1957
- Born August 7, 1936 in Dallas, TX USA
- Died July 22, 2011 in Mesquite, TX USA
Eighteen-year-old Tex Nelson was signed by the Baltimore Orioles to a $40,000 bonus contract right out of high school in Dallas, TX, on June 20, 1955. The teenage phenom, who was hailed as the "Babe Ruth of Texas," did pick up his first major league base hit off Bob Feller, but only hit .205 with no home runs in 79 games for the Orioles from 1955 to 1957. Sadly enough, this would be the extent of the young outfielder's time in the major leagues and an argument can be made that the young man was the victim of the bonus rule that was in effect at this time.
Tex, or Bob as he was also known, spent the next five years in the minors but never came close to getting a second chance at the major league level. Sent to the San Antonio Missions of the Texas League and then to the Vancouver Mounties in 1957, Tex had a better outlook as he hit .301 with 5 home runs in 49 games, between the two teams. In 1958 he hit .280 with 11 homers in a 96-game dual season with the class B Wilson Tobs and the AA Dallas Rangers.
In 1959, he spent time with three clubs, appearing in 96 games and hitting for a .266 average with 29 homers. Tex had his best year in baseball in 1960 with the Tri-City Braves of the class B Northwest League hitting for a .283 average with 29 four-baggers in 116 games. His career came to an end at age 24 in 1961, playing with three clubs and hitting but .225 with nine homers. This ended Tex's five-year minor league career with a .273 batting average with 83 home runs in 414 games.
Tex then returned to Dallas, TX where he was employed with the East Texas Motor Freight Company.