First Phillie to homer onto Ashburn Alley in two years is ‘living the dream’

Edmundo Sosa is living the dream as a bench-turned-everyday player while Turner is on the shelf.
St. Louis Cardinals v Philadelphia Phillies
St. Louis Cardinals v Philadelphia Phillies / Tim Nwachukwu/GettyImages

Edmundo Sosa launched the hanging curve in the general direction of Pat Burrell’s important double in Game 5 of the 2008 World Series. Burrell’s ball back then was smoked. Sosa’s ball was also smoked but went much higher and farther. Philadelphia Phillies play-by-play man Tom McCarthy bellowed, “Bless his heart, he’s been the ultimate fill-in!”

The invaluable utilityman’s two-run, 439-foot homer landed in Ashburn Alley, the first home run hit in Citizens Bank Park among the cheesesteak seekers since a ball off the bat of Darick Hall landed there almost two years ago. It may also well become emblematic of Sosa’s invaluable contribution to this year’s Phillies campaign, much as Burrell’s World Series liner became an exclamation point at the end of his Phillies years.

Sosa’s bomb became the structural steel of the 4-2 Phillies win that closed out the team’s May. Friday night’s win pushed the Phillies record for the month to 20-7 and was the team’s 40th overall.

First Phillie to homer onto Ashburn Alley in two years is ‘living the dream’

“I'm living the dream right now," Sosa said after the game, per's Paul Casella. "I'm having a lot of fun on the field and I'm working the best that I can to help get the team wins.”

It is almost as though Trea Turner were still in the lineup. Since Sosa largely took over at shortstop in Turner’s absence on May 3, he has matched the former LA star’s hot start with a .303 batting average, 23 hits, two stolen bases, 13 RBI and three homers. Friday’s missile was the longest of the infielder’s career.

Starter Aaron Nola, who was also superb Friday, did not see Sosa’s home run, but noted, as per Casella, that “it sounded really good.”

A superb defensive player, Sosa has also made only one error at shortstop in 95 chances since May 1. He has helped turn 14 double plays as well from that position since then.

It is often said that utility players are utility players for a reason: However effective they are whenever they get to play, they wouldn’t be that good every day. The 28-year-old Sosa has now proven that he can play at a very high level for a solid month. How long can he stay at this level? The Phillies are counting on at least another couple of weeks.

But while no one was looking, Edmundo Sosa may have begun to see himself as a starter.