The 2016 season will go down in history as a “home run year to remember” in the Phillies farm system.
Outfielders Dylan Cozens led all of minor league baseball in homers with 40 and Jose Pujols led all of low A ball in homers with 24.
For AA Reading Cozens hit 29 of his homers at home. He hit one more homer on the road in the playoffs.
Cozens was followed closely all season long by teammate Rhys Hoskins with 38 long balls, 25 at home) during the regular season, plus one more at home in the playoffs. Watch and Read HERE.
Though Cozens and Hoskins will be in the major league spring training camp they have been all but ruled out of opening the season with the Phillies. But they will provide a good opportunity for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs fan to see them in action hopefully for a short time before they get the call to the Show!
But maybe another version of a power hitting tandem might be on the way in the Phillies farm system.
Last year Jose Pujols hit 24 home runs, equally divided home and away, in 498 at bats for the Lakewood BlueClaws in the regular season. Watch a Pujols home run HERE.
Jiandido Tromp hit 20 homers in 458 at bats, ten homers each for Lakewood, four at home, and the Clearwater Threshers, equally divided home and away. Watch a Tromp home run for the Threshers, HERE.
Though not near the Cozens/Hoskins combined 78 regular season homers, Pujols and the Tromp both had career highs for homers in leagues and parks difficult to hit homers.
On the other hand, Cozens or Hoskins did not hit as many as 20 home runs during a season when they were with Lakewood or Clearwater.
In 509 at bats for Lakewood in 2014, Cozens hit only 16 homers, evenly divided between home and away. In 2015 in 365 at bats for Clearwater he hit only five homers, four at home and one on the road. That same year Cozens did go on and hit three more homers in 40 at bats to finish up the regular season at FirstEnergy Stadium in Reading.
In first half of the 2015 season for Lakewood in 255 at bats Hoskins hit 9 homers but only one at home. In the second half at high A he hit 8 homers in 243 at bats but only two of them were at home in Clearwater’s then called Bright House Field. He did hit one more home run in Clearwater in the Florida State League playoffs.
Putting the home run numbers in prospective for Pujols and Tromp, they had an outstanding 2016 season in home runs especially compared to the Cozens and Hoskins numbers when they played in the same South Atlantic and Florida State Leagues.
Tromp’s 5 homers in a half season last year at the Threshers home park were more home runs than either Cozens and Hoskins hit during their time playing in Clearwater’s now called Spectrum Field.
Projecting what Pujols and Tromp could do hitting homers when they get to Reading when they arrive at FirstEnergy Stadium says they have the potential to approach Cozens/Hoskins numbers.
Pujols and Tromp will be two players to watch closely when the Phillies minor league camp opens next month at the Carpenter Complex.
We just renewed our Clearwater Threshers season tickets and we expect to see the long balls of Jose Pujols and Jiandido Tromp at least to start the season at Spectrum Field but maybe not for long.