When the LA Angels signed Zack Cozart this Winter they were not totally sure all they were getting with the first-time All-Star who is 32 years old and coming off a career year in 2017.
The LA Angels signed Zack Cozart to play third base which is a position that he has not played in his major league career. Cozart had been a shortstop for six seasons with the Cincinnati Reds where he compiled a .980 fielding percentage.
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Offensively Cozart has hit 83 homers and driven 281 runs with a .255 career average. Not stellar numbers as a whole. However, last season Cozart broke out in a big way smacking 24 homers and driving in 63 runs with a .297 average and a .385 OBP all of which were career-highs.
When Cozart started Spring Training he was the team’s starting third baseman, but he hasn’t played it that much this Spring. Cozart first was called upon to fill-in for Andrelton Simmons at shortstop, who was out with a jammed shoulder. Just recently Ian Kinsler pulled a groin muscle and Cozart was called upon again to fill-in for Kinsler at second base.
Not only did Cozart fill Kinsler in the field, but also his role as a lead-off hitter who sets the table for Mike Trout and Justin Upton to drive him in. Cozart did not skip a beat and even hit a home run in his Angels debut Thursday going three for six with an RBI.
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Not bad for a guy who won himself a donkey last season from former teammate Joey Votto because of his selection to the NL All-Star team. Cozart has flashed the leather at all three spots he has played this Spring and the Angels can’t be any happier with their initial investment in Cozart.
Cozart’s personality seems to be a perfect fit with the Angels. His versatility is an added bonus and hopefully he will continue to hit wherever Angels manager Mike Scioscia decides to put him in the line-up.