This past weekend, one of the last of summer, I chose to spend my Saturday night at Citizens Bank Park instead of down the shore. Would that have happened three weeks ago? No chance.
But I couldn’t go one more game without seeing the phenom that is Rhys Hoskins in person. So, there I was Saturday night sitting right off home plate on the third base side when Hoskins hit his 10th home run of his very short career. It was why I chose CBP over dinner on the bay. I still couldn’t believe what I was seeing.
This is what fans have been clamoring and waiting for all season long, but you know what they say, it’s better late than never. With each bomb Hoskins hits, I start to forget every rally-killing double play, blown save and baserunning miscue.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, let’s get you up to speed. After going 0-for-10 to start his career, Hoskins has been downright unstoppable. Since then, he became the fastest MLB player to hit 10 home runs. Before Monday’s game against the Braves, he hit a homer in five straight games and eight of nine. As if those numbers weren’t shocking enough, Tim Malcolm broke down his historic start even more.
This is what this season was supposed to be. Nobody expected the Phillies to compete for the NL East, but we hoped we would get to watch the future start to take shape. If the Phillies lost but Vince Velasquez gave up just two runs over seven innings, we’d take it. Other than Aaron Nola, Nick Williams, Cesar Hernandez, Aaron Altherr and Odubel Herrera, however, there hasn’t been much to bank on, let alone spend your Saturday night watching.
Not only did Hoskins get me to the ballpark, but he made me stay in what was a blowout to the World Series champs. After the Cubs’ seven-run seventh to increase their lead 13-2, I could’ve salvaged my night and left. Instead, I glanced up at Phanavision and saw Hoskins was due up in the bottom of the inning. I wasn’t going anywhere.
As we reach September, we can only hope General Manager Matt Klentak and Co. take into account the excitement Hoskins has injected into this team and call up the likes of J.P. Crawford and Scott Kingery. Even if they only play in a handful of games and perform half as good as Hoskins, it gives fans something to look forward to. It gives us hope.