Some dates are more important than others in watching Phillies baseball. August 22, 2017, might be one of those dates.
We will be watching Rhys Hoskins to see if he can hit his second home run in Citizens Bank Park. His first was back in a preseason Future game in March of 2016. Watch his first CBP home run HERE. The Phillies, with the worst record in baseball, then buried him in the minors until two weeks ago.
What he did on the just completed Phillies road trip is what legends are made of. Hitting five home runs in the seven road games is one of those “hard to believe, Harry” moments. Even more hard to believe is that he hit them in an only 25 at bat span.
We watched Hoskins play in his first professional game in Williamsport back in 2014 in the New York-Penn League. Watch his first professional plate appearance in Williamsport HERE. This afternoon Hoskins plays in his first major league doubleheader.
We were also there back in 2013 when J.P. Crawford got hit first professional hit, a swinging infield hit down the third base line at Willie Stargell Field at Pirate City in a GCL game.
After his first two games and two fielding chances at third base Crawford, we expect, will take the field tonight again at third base in Allentown for the IronPigs.
Crawford’s play has been nothing short of spectacular in the last two month for Lehigh Valley. After hitting .281 (1.025 OPS) in July Crawford has heated up even more in August hitting .321 so far this month. Read HERE.
Second baseman Scott Kingery is having a season to remember. Between AA and AAA he is hitting .313 with a .924 OPS. Over his last ten games with the IronPigs, he is hitting .372. He is a true five tool player with 26 home runs and is 27 for 32 in stolen base attempts.
@ScottyJetpax25 was clutch last night, though going only one for five, his bases loaded single drove in the winning run in the tenth inning to keep his 19 game hitting streak alive.
Tonight’s starting pitcher for Lehigh Valley, Jose Taveras, is fast tracking his way to the big leagues. Since he was the winning pitcher in the Florida State All-Star game back in the middle of June, he has been on a rapid two month upward trajectory. He has had three starts at AA and four starts at AAA to go with 16 starts at high A to start the season.
He brings a 1.17 AAA, ERA into tonight’s game against the Washington Nationals’ farm team from Syracuse, N.Y. In his last start he pitched a six inning, one hitter against the Orioles farm team in Norfolk, Va.
I know what we will be doing starting about 4 o’clock this afternoon: Watching the Phillies stars of tomorrow play today!