MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — At 2 years old, MJ Huss is just a few inches taller than his older sister Olivia’s baseball bat. That doesn’t stop him from walking up to the plate with the confidence of a major leaguer. Unlike most baseball fans, MJ doesn’t watch the game … he studies it.
“He watches the nuances of the players,” said MJ’s dad Matt. “He knows how to lead off the bases and all sorts of weird things you wouldn’t expect a 2-year-old to know.”
The little slugger has learned how to hit just like the players in the Twins line up by watching them.
“He would come up to us and say ‘Mommy, look, I Cuddy’ and show me Cuddy’s swing, or ‘Mommy look I’m Joey’ or ‘Thome,'” said MJ’s mom, Brandee. “He’d watch them swing and you could just see it churning in his head, he’d be sitting there practicing it.”
MJ’s obsession with baseball started when he was just an infant. His parents noticed he would pay more attention to the TV when baseball was on.
“We laugh, I didn’t even know he knew who Drew Butera was and the next thing we know he’s kneeling down like Drew Butera. It’s hilarious,” Matt said.
“We have literally not once showed him how to do anything associated with any specific player, ever. That was stuff he just picked up on his own,” he said.
Like his favorite player, Michael Cuddyer, MJ is a utility man. He plays all the positions on the field. These days, MJ likes to play short stop, just like his 6-year-old sister Olivia. He’ll dive for balls and jump around trying to catch the ball.
Standing on the mound, MJ demonstrates how Francisco Liriano bends his elbow and wrist when pitching towards the plate.
If you ask him who his favorite pitcher is, he rattles off most of the bullpen, “Glen Perkins, I like him.” MJ said picking up the ball. “And Carl Pavano, Scott Baker and Joe Nathan.”
Being an avid Twins fan has put the pressure on MJ’s mom.
“I have to keep the laundry done or he gets mad. He wears his Twins shirts every day and when they’re dirty, I try to put some other shirt on him. He gets very angry and upset,” Brandee said.
MJ also plays a lot of baseball around the house, even if there’s no one to play with.
“He will literally walk around the house with a glove and ball, throwing the ball off the wall, fielding it and then throwing it onto the next wall,” said Matt. “I don’t think we’ve broken anything yet, nothing we’d consider extremely valuable.”
For now, the Huss family is taking it all in stride. After all, MJ is only two years old.
“It probably borders on a little bit of an unhealthy obsession, because it’s pretty much all he thinks about,” joked Matt. “We want him to like it and we don’t want to force it on him. From the looks of it, it’s going to be a long road.”
Click here to visit the Twins Blog for more Twins tidbits and check out more about MJ on Monday night on WCCO 4 News at 10.