Phillies: With Tommy Joseph, Brock Stassi Struggling, Is It Time to Call Up Rhys Hoskins?

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Feb 25, 2017; Clearwater, FL, USA; Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Rhys Hoskins (70) hits a home run during the sixth inning against the New York Yankees at Spectrum Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 25, 2017; Clearwater, FL, USA; Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Rhys Hoskins (70) hits a home run during the sixth inning against the New York Yankees at Spectrum Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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Have we already seen enough from first basemen Tommy Joseph and Brock Stassi to warrant the Phillies calling up Rhys Hoskins?

The motif going into the season for the 2017 Phillies was one of hope and optimism for the future. A common criticism of the organization is an unwillingness to look to the future and an insistence to live in the glory days of the past.

With the departure of Ryan Howard, there are no remaining members of the 2008 World Series team on the current Phillies roster. Now a void is left at first base which must be filled by a building block for future sustained success.

The first chance to take the starting job was given to Tommy Joseph. Joseph burst onto the scene last season playing so well that it forced Phillies manager Pete Mackanin to make the tough decision to lessen the playing time of Howard, in favor of a platoon to give more playing time to a possible heir to the throne at first.

In 2016 Joseph batted .257 in 315 at bats with 21 home runs and 47 RBI, providing optimism that he could be the long-term solution at first.  While the season is still young, the success has not been there for Joseph so far in 2017.

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In 55 at-bats so far, Joseph is batting just .200 with only one home run and seven RBI. While many suspected that Joseph would not be one to hit for a high average, the power numbers that gave the Phillies organization hope last season, have not translated over to this young season.

Along with Joseph, Brock Stassi has been the other young Phillie to be given a chance at first base.

Stassi won over the hearts of the media and fans alike with his interview after learning he would be making his first big league roster. Stassi showed raw emotion in that interview instantly becoming a fan favorite.

While everyone enjoys a feel good story, in the end, production is what matters most and Stassi has struggled to produce to date in limited playing time.  In 23 at bats so far Stassi is hitting a meager .174 with one home run and one RBI.

It is early in the season and with most baseball seasons as the weather begins to heat up, so do the bats.  The question on the mind of every Phillies fan is what if they never heat up? What are the options from there?   If that is the case, then enter the Phillies 13th-ranked prospect, Rhys Hoskins.

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Hoskins crushed Double-A pitching last season on his way to a .281 average while finishing 2nd in the minors with 38 home runs and 3rd in the minors with 116 RBI.  So far in Triple-A this season he has picked up right where he left off in Double-A and has shown no signs of slowing down.

In 17 games to date, Hoskins has been raking the ball to the tune of a .321 batting average with four home runs and seven RBI.  As the season goes on it will need to be seen if he can sustain this torrid pace once the pitchers learn his tendencies at the plate after more exposure to him.

That brings us to the ultimate question. Have we seen enough of Joseph and Stassi to warrant a Hoskins call-up in the near future?  Ultimately the answer to this question will be in the hands of Joseph and Stassi. They will need to begin to produce or Hoskins will continue to put pressure on the organization to make a change at first.

Next: Phillies Featured Player: Outfielder Aaron Altherr

Only time will tell how the future will unfold for Joseph, Stassi, and Hoskins. However if all three continue on their current paths, it is possible we may be seeing Rhys Hoskins in the big leagues sooner rather than later.

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