Maryland baseball is a family affair in the Costes household. Older brother Marty played for the Terps from 2016-18 and is now in the Houston Astros organization. Now, his younger brother Maxwell is roaming the very same outfield.
The two never crossed paths on the college baseball diamond, as Marty left after his junior season, but that allowed Maxwell to pave his own legacy with the Terps.
“The biggest thing that my brother told me is that I’m not him. When I get here, it’s going to be my own story. It’s going to be my own journey,” Maxwell Costes said. “I didn’t come here to play in his legacy. I didn’t come here to live up to his name or anything. I came here to make a name for myself.”
Head coach Rob Vaughn jokingly said that at a baseball camp when Marty was a rising junior in high school and Maxwell had just finished eighth grade, Maxwell performed better. But the two are separate players, and Maxwell being the only Costes on the team has helped him focus on living up to his own potential, not his brother’s.
“Maxwell’s a different person. He’s not his brother,” Vaughn said. “I think that’s something that’s really big cause when there is expectation, you can kind of add that pressure to yourself. ... Maxwell has done a great job. That guy is super comfortable with who he is. He understands his game.”
Costes has wasted no time making an impression. He won Big Ten Player and Freshman of the Week in just his second week with the team after going 4-for-9 with six RBIs against Maine in a Terps sweep. Going into Maryland’s weekend series at Stetson, Costes is hitting .300/.475/.420 in his first 11 games with one home run, nine RBIs and four doubles.
This early success is due in part to knowing the ropes of college baseball before ever playing a game of it.
“My brother and I used to talk all the time when I was still in high school about what this life was like, about traveling all the time, having to miss class,” Costes said. “He said a lot of it was you gotta be really on top of everything you’re doing.”
Maxwell jokingly said about Marty, a more reserved person, that the two would talk for hours and that was one of the only times he would get Marty to talk for a long period of time. But even without his brother around this spring, the younger Costes has been enjoying college and seems quite relaxed on a young Maryland team.
“When he’s decisive and he’s attacking the game, man, he’s impressive and it’s been fun to watch him hit,” Vaughn said. “I tell him, ‘Don’t make it a science project.’ I can’t say enough for what he’s done.”
Costes credits his teammates, coaches and family for his early successes. The people around him have helped him adjust to the college game, and now he’s battle-tested heading into a tough weekend series at Stetson.
“A lot of my success has come from the fact that my teammates are always talking to me, always picking me up,” Costes said. “Being a freshman here, it ain’t no easy thing, so I have really good support system.”
Of course, this is only the beginning for Costes. He’s still played just three weeks, and he knows he has plenty to work on because he’s far from where he wants to be in a few years.
“I still feel that I’m very far away from an end product,” Costes said. “I think over the course of this season, and hopefully the next two years that I’m here, that I'm a much better player than I am right now.”