As the Phillies were in a myriad of self-destruction in May, one thing became prevalent – Tommy Joseph can be a cleanup hitter. Not too long ago, there were constant whispers within the organization about his ability to continue his MLB career, let alone be the main source of offense on the Major League club. Yet, he’s been the Phillies’ best source of power this season and has hit 31 home runs over a 158-game span. Those are pretty impressive numbers when you factor in an entire season.
If you have followed my writing, you know I was very high on Joseph coming into this year and his ability to slash 30+ homers. After a slow start, he now looks to be a niece piece in the Phillies’ lineup moving forward, especially with how the offense has produced over the last handful of games.
However, another guy by the name of Rhys Hoskins is tearing the cover off the ball in the minors and plays the same position.
As of June 6th, Hoskins currently stands with an average of .301 with 13 home runs and 45 RBIs. His torrid pace continues to exceed expectations and makes you wonder if he can keep up this intensity for the whole year. He’s been one of the best performers in minor league baseball, and with the Phillies way out of contention, his call up may not be far away.
The biggest question, though, is where does he play?
With two of the best hitters in the organization right now playing at first base, what can the Phillies do to make this work? Neither of these players show speed as a positive and both have defensive skills that are similar to Pat Burrell. Can they play the outfield? Would they be a liability out there? Remember, Joseph was supposed to be our catcher of the future when he was acquired, but concussions redirected his path to the majors. The only logical spot for him was to man first base or become a DH in a league that doesn’t offer that batting slot. If the Phillies thought either was capable of a position change, that probably would have been explored already. If these players continue on their pace, could a trade be in the cards? If so, who brings back more value?
With the Phillies continuing to frustrate themselves and their fans, everything needs to be on the table. If there is a shot to get another arm to help this team going forward, you do it. What would you do if you were the GM?
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