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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

'A voice for the voiceless'
Kiley O’Brien ’25, Assistant Features Editor • July 18, 2024
Fit to be king
Lilli Dellheim '25 M.A., Special to the Hawk • July 13, 2024

Andrew Cossetti: Hawk Hill’s new home run king

Among+Big+5+teams+for+career+home+runs%2C+Cossetti+is+only+behind+La+Salle+University+Steve+ODonnell+%E2%80%9989+with+45+and+Villanova+University+Gary+Scott+%E2%80%9989+with+42.%0APHOTOS%3A+MIA+MESSINA+%E2%80%9925%2FTHE+HAWK
Among Big 5 teams for career home runs, Cossetti is only behind La Salle University Steve O’Donnell ’89 with 45 and Villanova University Gary Scott ’89 with 42. PHOTOS: MIA MESSINA ’25/THE HAWK

In the first game of the double header against Radford University on March 11, senior catcher Andrew Cossetti hit a grand slam in the eighth inning to extend the Hawks’ lead over the Highlanders to five. 

That home run was the 30th of his collegiate career, tying his career total with John Brue ’16, career home runs record holder entering this season.

At the top of the first inning in the second game of the double header, just two innings removed from tying the record, Cossetti stepped up to the plate with two outs. He got a hold of a pitch from Radford pitcher Brandon Feathers and launched his record-breaking 31st home run into left field.

According to Cossetti, the magnitude of the moment did not hit him at first, but once he sat down in the dugout after rounding the bases, he realized it was a moment that he would remember forever.

“It was a humbling moment,” Cossetti said. “Putting yourself in the record books of a division one program is pretty cool.”

The Eagleville, Pennsylvania native and La Salle College High School graduate has hit 12 home runs this season, which is currently tied for seventh in the country. His accolades include selections to the 2019 Philadelphia Big 5 Baseball All-Big 5 Team, 2019 Atlantic-10 (A-10) All Rookie Team, 2021 A-10 All Conference First Team, 2021 A-10 All-Championship First Team, and 2021 American Baseball Coaches Association All-East Region First Team. However, the home run record is at the top of the list right now, according to Cossetti.

“When I came to St. Joe’s, it was a goal of mine to be one of the best players in the history of the program.” Cossetti said. “Cementing myself in the record books like that does that.”

According to Head Coach Fritz Hamburg, Cossetti breaking the home run record is even more impressive when factoring in how the 2020 season was cut short because of the covid-19 pandemic. Cossetti did not hit a home run in any of the 10 games the team played that season.

“[Breaking the record] is tremendous for Andrew.” Hamburg said. “Not only the fact that he has done what he has, but one of those seasons was actually the covid year.”

Hamburg said the team knew he was approaching the record fast and it was an exciting moment for a player whose success is having a positive impact on the team.

“Whenever someone as an individual gets an accomplishment at this level, it’s great for the individual and great for the program,” Hamburg said. “It is certainly exciting.”

Cossetti said he knew he was close to breaking the record, but the record breaking home run came much quicker than he thought it would.

“I did not think I would get [the record] that early.” Cossetti said. “Obviously a couple things went right, and I started feeling good, and I got the record earlier than I thought, which was just a really cool experience.”

Associate Head Coach Ryan Wheeler serves as the team’s recruiting coordinator. According to Wheeler, there was no secret formula that allowed them to see Cossetti’s potential out of high school. The evidence was already there.

“I saw a young man that had a good skill set at a young age,” Wheeler said. “I could tell that he had a good frame on him, and he was very passionate about playing.”

Wheeler said every time Cossetti steps up to the plate, you never know what is going to happen, and you may see something you haven’t before.

“Every time he swings the bat, it is electric,” Wheeler said. “I mean, the ball jumps off his bat.”

Wheeler said Cossetti is not the first player whose turns at bat creates an exciting sense of unpredictability. Deon Stafford Jr. ’17 generated that same feeling. Stafford, also a catcher, was St. Joe’s highest draft pick in 38 years when he was drafted in the fifth round of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates.   

According to Cossetti, one of the big reasons why he chose to play on Hawk Hill was because of the program’s reputation of producing high-quality catchers such as Stafford and Brian O’Keefe ’14.

 “The reason I came to St. Joe’s was because Coach Hamburg said he was dedicated to the catcher’s position and getting good guys in here and then getting them out into the draft,” Cossetti said.

Cossetti said he talks to both Stafford and O’Keefe and they have both been great resources who have been helping him throughout his career.

“I would be lying to you if I said it was not my goal to get drafted after the season, but like I said, I cannot control that.” Cossetti said. “So I just put my head down, get to work and keep trying to win ball games.”

With 30 regular season games remaining, Cossetti is just six home runs away from tying Stafford’s single season home run record of 18.

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