“Up, In and Gone” was how Logan O’Hoppe’s swing on his home run over left field wall was described in Sunday’s intrasquad game at the Alternative Camp in Allentown. With such a quick bat, do not pitch this guy inside or the exit velocity off his hits might break the speed gun!
The day before, O’Hoppe hit a pitch on the outside corner which was caught at the base of the right field wall at Coca-Cola Park. He is the real deal with power to all fields even though he is only 20 years-old and has not played higher than the likely soon to be defunct short-season New York-Penn League.
The problem remains just where do you pitch O’Hoppe to keep the ball off his bat from being to hot to handle down the third base line where he has hit several doubles this summer or having a chance to leave the park to all fields?
Also Sunday, Phillies backup catcher Andrew Knapp showed why he is having a season to remember. With a benched so-called best catcher/DH in baseball, J.T. Realmuto, “riding the pines”, for some reason, Knapp went deep for the only run the Phillies could score in a 14-1 shellacking by the Mets. The Phillies look set behind the plate with the likes of O’Hoppe and Knapp no matter what Realmuto decides to do in his free agency in a couple of weeks.
More good news for those of us who find the young minor leagues prospects more satisfying to follow than the big league team. The ever alert Phillies Front Office finally has decided to add two player to the 60-man roster making them eligible to play in the MLB. These guys have more than earned the chance!
Lefty reliever Jeff Singer, who struck out all four batters he faced in the spring training Grapefruit League and super sub Luke Williams, who hit .391 with one homer in 26 Grapefruit League at bats, both finally got calls to show up in Allentown. Never too late to do the right thing!
It remains to be seen if the Phillies can make it to the post season but if they fail, we might finally get the changes needed at CBP next year from the talent languishing on the Phillies bench or playing now at Coca-Cola Park in East Allentown.