One position the Phillies do not have to worry about in its minor league system this season is first base. All three of them, Kyle Martin, Rhys Hoskins and Tommy Joseph, powered the ball long and far off of Phillies major league pitching in games on Saturday.
Baseball Betsy and I always make it a point each year to say farewell to the guys heading up north on Saturday morning when camp breaks. As the buses lined up along the entrance to the Carpenter Complex to take them to the airport, we learned that a game between the Clearwater Threshers and the Extended Spring team was taking place on Roberts Field. The game was being played so that two of the five starters in the Phillies major league rotation, Jerad Eickhoff and Vince Velasquez could get some work in.
With storm clouds lurking in the sky above Roberts Field they did get an inning in before the clouds opened up and rain sent everyone scurrying. Though not before Kyle Martin leveled off on a long blast over the left-center field fence off of Velasquez. One player later standing nearby remarked that Martin had hit four homers in his last four games. What a way to end spring training for him, watch HERE.
We hurried back home to watch the Phillies Futures game on MLB.TV from Citizens Bank Park. Before we could settle in, Rhys Hoskins for the Futures went the other way and lined a homer into the right-center field seats off of Phillies projected closer David Hernandez. Watch HERE. Rhys led all Phillies last season in homers with 26 combined while playing for Lakewood, Clearwater and Sydney in the ABL. Hoskins is listed to start the 2016 season in Reading.
Then, the next batter up after Hoskins was Tommy Joseph who was the DH in the game and he hit a long ball that I thought was out over the angle in deep left-center field. But the ball bounded off the wall as Tommy hustled into third for a triple.
If the Phillies have one position in its minor league system that has depth, it is at first base. Remember the names this season, Kyle Martin for the Threshers, Rhys Hoskins for Reading and Tommy Joseph for the IronPigs. All three of them can hit a baseball a long way no matter who is pitching.