2022 will be the year of Boston Red Sox prospect Kole Cottam
Kole Cottam had a spectacular 2021 season if you ask me. The Red Sox catching prospect was already good with the bat, and made some improvements there. It was the massive steps forward he took defensively that really put it all together though.
Cottam set career-highs in all his slash line numbers, dropping a .278/.371/.500 clip. He also roped 18 doubles to go along with career-highs in triples (2) and home runs (10). His 33 runs scored and 33 RBI weren’t career-bests but they were still solid for just 234 at-bats.
In short, Cottam continued to show incredible upside when it comes to the offensive side of his game. The catcher wasn’t exactly known for his defense before 2021 though. He seemed to understand that, and work extremely hard to make improvements. It worked.
We saw improvements across the board for Cottam defensively. He was calling games better, showed off an improved arm, blocking the plate better and made strides when it came to framing pitches. It was all there.
And that’s where 2022 comes into play. We’ve already seen that the right-handed hitter can improve pretty drastically both offensively and defensively. And in 2021 he did it despite reaching Double-A, which was a new height for him.
Now in 2022, we can expect Cottam to start the year with the Portland Sea Dogs in Double-A. The Red Sox have a lot of catching prospects that bring a lot of excitement to the organization. That being said, Cottam is one of the most well-rounded prospects at the position. And while he might have some playing time taken away from him by other prospects, we should expect to see a really strong amount of playing time for him.
That means we should see more than 234 at-bats. Could he get back up over 300 like he had in 2019? Absolutely, without a question. And with those extra at-bats, we could see even bigger boosts to his stats that saw career-highs last season. Maybe some extra run production as well.
Meanwhile, it will be fun to see if he takes another step forward defensively. Could Cottam turn into a true star on that side of the field?
Most importantly, we’ll see the catcher get more time in Double-A. There’s definitely potential for a jump to Triple-A as well. Boston’s catching situation in the Majors isn’t exactly great. The Red Sox only have two catching prospects that I could see getting a call-up anytime soon.
Ronaldo Hernandez is already in Triple-A, so barring something crazy he’s the first to get to the show. But Kole Cottam isn’t too far behind. We could see him start to really crack open that door in 2022. It should be a fun year to watch the Kentucky Gentleman (that’s AEW wrestler Chuck Taylor but Cottam went to Kentucky so I’m officially dubbing that his nickname).