Puckett’s Pond’s Minnesota Twins 2018 Top-40 Prospects: #36-40
By Nate Palmer
No. 39 Andrew Bechtold, 3B, 22-years-old
Andrew Bechtold is in his second season with the Twins minor league system after being drafted in the 5th round of the 2017 MLB Draft. Bechtold was originally drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 37th round of the 2014 draft. Bechtold instead of signing with the Rangers chose to honor his commitment to Maryland. After struggling for Maryland, Bechtold transferred to Chipola Junior College and was then a commit to LSU before the Twins drafted him.
The third baseman spent his first taste of professional baseball as a member of the Elizabethton Twins where he played 43 games for the E-Twins. Bechtold excelled as he hit .299/.406/.424 with a .829 OPS, 10 doubles, and two home runs. That set Bechtold up for his promotion which resulted in his 2018 start in Cedar Rapids.
His 2017 performance also led to Bechtold being included on Benjamin Chase’s “10 under the radar players to watch” at the beginning of the season over at Call to the Pen. Chase explained Bechtold as having shown good gap-to-gap power and showing the ability to develop over the fence power as he continues to develop. Unfortunately, Bechtold has hit a rough stretch as he has played through 2018.
Bechtold’s overall line reads .216/.315/.286, .601 OPS, 17 doubles, and two home runs. That is clearly disappointing, but his season hasn’t been a complete disaster but instead more of a rollercoaster. For instance, in June Bechtold played in 23 games and hit .303/.426/.434 with seven doubles and a home run. The Kernels, and the Twins, will be looking for Bechtold to finish 2018 strong and regain consistency at the plate.