It just so happens that as I sat down to write this piece today, I received an e-mail from phillies.com, telling us some things we didn’t know about Philly’s favorite new slugger, Rhys Hoskins. It shared with us a little bit about the Phils first baseman in what they called “Getting To Know…” Rhys Hoskins, which included this image:
This is a very unique feature that shows just how human this guy is, and he’s awesome. Just thought I’d share. Anyway…
We’re here to talk about the expectations for the 24-year-old slugger after a rookie campaign in which he set records, opened eyes everywhere in the league, and made a name for himself as a bonafide big league power bat.
Rhys finished his rookie season with a .259 average, 18 home runs, 48 RBI, a .396 OBP, and a 1.014 OPS in just 170 at-bats. For a guy who didn’t even play two full months, this was pretty darn impressive.
Hoskins appeared in 50 games for the Phils. If you base those numbers on a 162-game schedule, and we say Rhys plays about 150 games (easier for math purposes for us writers), it would translate to a full season in which Hoskins would have about 54 home runs and 144 RBI. Yeah, that’s good.
Rhys came in and made an immediate impact, and combined with his numbers in the minors where he was amongst the elite power hitters across the over the last few seasons, he has shown that his power is as legit as it gets. The key for him will be to adjust to pitchers who now have seen him face big league pitching and have tape on him. There’s no question that teams facing the Phillies will be watching plenty of film on their big first baseman, as he figures to be the focal point of their lineup for years to come.
This brings us to the point of us Phillies fans trying to come up with expectations for our new star. What should we expect out of him come 2018 and beyond? Will his numbers be close to those mathematically configured 150-game stats? Will they be nowhere close in his sophomore season which is traditionally when many young players see a slump? Or will he fall somewhere in between?
We asked out Twitter followers earlier this week what they expect from Rhys come 2018, ranging the statistics from him demolishing everything in sight to coming back down to earth. Here are the results:
So our vote concludes that very few of us expect Rhys to stay at the torrid pace that he maintained through his first 50 MLB games. Still, though, most of us expect big power numbers out of him, as half of the voters think he will end up raising his .259 average up to around .280 and smashing 35 bombs with 115 RBI. 20% think he will do slightly better than that, getting that average up to .290 with 40 home runs and 120 RBI. 20% also think we should temper these expectations a little, as he could be closer to a .270 average with 30 home runs and just crack the 100 RBI mark. A small 9% of us, though, think that he’s the real deal, and could be a .300 hitter with 50 home runs and 130 RBI. Man, that would be nice.
I would personally lean more towards the majority vote here with Rhys ranging around the .280, 35 and 115 marks. This is by no means looking down on him, as this would be a borderline MVP season for anybody. It’s just a little crazy to expect him to come in and maintain the pace that he did throughout his first taste of the bigs.
I think we would all be happy with numbers like this from Rhys Lightning, so lets hope and pray that he stays healthy and that he translates this early success into a great career over at first base for our Phightins.
With guys like him, Nick Williams, Aaron Altherr and more to carry this offense for the foreseeable future, good things are on the way, guys. Trust the process.
Photo: Paul Searing via Flickr