Costello found dead in New Zealand

The cause of the untimely death of 23-year-old Minnesota Twins prospect Ryan Costello was reconfirmed as natural causes Tuesday by Auckland Tautara team officials.

Found dead in a New Zealand hotel room Monday morning, Costello was in the country getting ready to play in the Australian Baseball League.

Costello split time between Fort Myers and Pensacola in 2019. He played 40 games with the Blue Wahoos, the Double-A affiliate of the Twins. He hit .240 and belted seven home runs.

In a statement, the Twins expressed its “most sincere condolences to Ryan’s family, friends, coaches and teammates.”

Blue Wahoos manager Ramon Borrego also shared his thoughts on Costello, one of team’s most popular players.

“In my eyes, Ryan was not just a player, but he was also an amazing human being, who always gave me everything he could and demonstrated nothing but respect,” Borrego said. “He will forever have a place in my heart as I could never forget such an amazing soul.”

A native of Connecticut, Costello went undrafted out of high school in 2014. He played college ball at Central Connecticut State. Seattle drafted him in the 31st round of the 2017 Major League Baseball Draft.

The Mariners dealt him to the Twins in 2018. That year, he helped lead High-A Fort Meyers to the Florida State League championship. He hit a key three-run home run in the decisive game against Daytona.

An autopsy will be performed on Costello once his parents can get to New Zealand. Their trip to the country is delayed because they don’t have passports.

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