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Husker baseball standout Matthews makes move to pros, preparing for MLB Draft

Posted at 8:40 PM, Jul 06, 2023

OMAHA (KMTV) — Brice Matthews has wanted to play professional baseball since he was a kid.

“It was the first sport that I ever played,” he said. “My dad played baseball in college. I was always swinging a bat around in the house, throwing the ball around. Every time I went to the baseball field, it was the best part of my day no matter what.

“Once I was old enough to understand what was going on on TV and watching baseball games and playing baseball video games,” Matthews said. “That’s always what I wanted to do, wanted to be on. To see my face on that screen, that’s been my goal ever since.”

The shortstop is ranked 57th on the prospect list on MLB.com.

That would translate to a second-round pick in the MLB Draft, which begins on Sunday.

Matthews said the talks of him going pro began last year, and the 2023 season solidified it.

This past season, Matthews had a .359 batting average and 20 home runs.

“Having the year that I had, it was like ‘man, this is really about to happen,’” he said. “And things just kind of kept going in the right direction.”

While he wishes Nebraska could have made the NCAA tournament one more time, he’s content with what he accomplished with the team.

His career average with the Huskers is .305 with 32 homers.

He also racked up 39 stolen bases, with 20 of those coming in 2023.

Stats aside, Matthews said the camaraderie between his teammates is what he’ll remember most.

“Those guys made the experience what it was,” Matthews said. “I’m so grateful for those guys to welcome me in for being so far away from home and just having that experience.”

He said the most important lesson he learned as a Husker is “be yourself.”

“Don’t take the game to seriously,” Matthews said. “Just make it a kids’ game and have fun. Have as much fun as you can.”

He’ll take that with him to the pros.

This weekend, Matthews said he’ll have family and friends over in Houston to watch the draft.

“They’re so excited,” he said. “You can ask my mom, dad, my sister, this is always what I’ve dreamed of. For this to be happening, they couldn’t be more ecstatic and happy for me.

“Everything happens for a reason, I believe that. It all led up to this moment and I wouldn’t trade any of that for anything.”