Twins’ Andrew Cossetti Looks Like He Can Stay At Catcher

Sure, Andrew Cossetti’s slugging percentage topped .600 for most of the season’s first two months, and yes, his ability to walk nearly as often as he struck out kept his on-base percentage above .450.

“I’d have to admit, we’re pretty surprised that he’s basically been the best hitter in all of Low-A this year,” Twins farm director Drew MacPhail said. “The 1-to-1 walk-to-strikeout ratio, plus the power he’s shown, it’s all incredibly encouraging.”

And yet, MacPhail said, the 11th-round pick last year from St. Joseph’s hasn’t impressed the Twins with his bat nearly as much as he has with his arm.

“It sounds funny for a kid with an OPS over a thousand, but it’s his work ethic that we’ve been talking about,” MacPhail said.

That’s because the 23-year-old Cossetti was drafted as a catcher, but the Twins didn’t actually believe that would be his position as a professional. He also plays first base.

“Our scouts all flagged his arm behind the dish as a hurdle, especially with MLB incentivizing stolen bases with the new rules,” MacPhail said. “I’m not sure many of them thought he’d be able to make it work.

“But Andrew took that as a challenge. He really worked on his arm strength throughout the offseason. And when he arrived at camp, he was registering at MLB average strength.”

As Cossetti punished pitchers in the Florida State League this spring, he was also able to keep the running game in check. Through the first seven weeks of the season, the 5-foot-10, 215-pound Cossetti had thrown out five basestealers in 18 attempts, for a 28% rate that ranked above the FSL average.

“If you had told me that when we first drafted him, it would have been hard to believe he could make those strides in the half a year that he’s been in the system,” MacPhail said.

“He’s been able to stay behind the plate, and that’s really exciting for us, to have a hitter like that at his position.”

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