Okay, this is a terrible attempt at trying to be funny but you will get the point. Rhys Hoskins has had one of the hottest starts in the league. He is currently batting .364 with 2 home runs, 9 RBIs, and has a 1.185 OPS. These are insane numbers to start the year. But Hoskins is familiar with doing insane things. If you remember, last season after making his Major League debut, he crushed 18 home runs in his first 34 games. Which made him the quickest to reach 18 career home runs. Hoskins was able to do so in just 34 games, the record before him was 18 home runs in 44 games. He shattered the record by a whopping 10 games.
WHERE DOES HOSKINS SIT WITH THE LEAGUE LEADERS?
Right now, Hoskins is tied for 4th in the National League in batting average. Behind just Buster Posey, Yasmani Grandal, and Ryan Flaherty. Along with his outstanding batting average, Hoskins has a .488 on-base percentage which is just ridiculous. If you don’t understand what the on-base percentage means, a .488 OBP means that he is getting on base practically half the time. The MLB single-season record for OBP is .609 which is held by Barry Bonds. To put it into more perspective, if the season ended today, Hoskins would have the 35th best OBP of all-time. In baseball, it is tough to get on base. Getting on base 48% of the time means baserunners, and base runners mean potential runs.
EXPECTATIONS FOR HOSKINS
Let’s just be real here, there is no way that Hoskins will be able to keep up this pace. Hoskins was projected before the season to finish batting .263 with 36 home runs and 105 RBIs, along with a .355 OBP and .523 slugging percentage. That means Hoskins would finish with a .878 OPS (Which is on-base plus slugging). Obviously, these projections were before he got off to the start that he has.
Personally, I think he will finish with about a .280 batting average with 35-40 home runs and around 110-120 RBIs. This would be a fantastic season, and I think any Phillies fan would be ecstatic.
THE IMPORTANCE OF ADJUSTMENTS
In any sport, adjustments are part of the game. This is especially true for baseball. As someone, I have met told me, “In every situation in baseball, someone loses. If the batter gets a hit, the pitcher loses. If the pitcher gets the batter out, the batter loses.” This is exactly right. Currenlty, Hoskins is winning most of the battles against pitchers that he faces. Soon pitchers will be forced to make adjustments to figure out how to slow him down. We saw this with Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees. He had an incredibly hot start, and then pitchers figured out how to get him out. Judge made the adjustments and finished with a record-breaking rookie season, where he finished with 52 home runs, 114 RBIs, and 127 walks. Those 52 home runs broke Mark McGwire’s rookie record of 49. Pitchers will figure out how to pitch to Hoskins, and he will figure out how to make the adjustments.
If you are a Phillies fan, there is a good reason to be excited. With Rhys Hoskins as a building block along with Scott Kingery and Odebul Herrera, the Phillies are in a good spot for the future. Don’t be afraid to enjoy the ride.
Statistics for the article are from mlb.com and fantasypros.com
Featured Image: Bryan Green via Flickr