2016 Phillies Report Card: Rhys Hoskins
The Phillies entered 2016 with low expectations and big dreams for the future, so it kind of makes sense that some of their brightest spots shone from FirstEnergy Stadium. Home to the Reading Fightin Phils, FirstEnergy hosted the most exciting hitting tandem in minor league baseball this year.
Dylan Cozens and Rhys Hoskins absolutely terrorized AA pitchers, ranking first and second in homers respectively and splitting the 2016 Paul Owens Award, given to the organization’s best minor league player.
While outfielder Cozens outslugged his teammate 40 homers to 38, Hoskins is arguably the more exciting prospect. In exchange for his dingers, Cozens struck out 186 times. Hoskins only whiffed 125 times to get there.
But this isn’t about how these players stack up against one another. It’s about the awesome season that Hoskins had. Aside from the round-trippers, the big-bodied 1st baseman slashed .281/.377/.566 across 589 plate appearances, good for 95 runs, 116 RBI, and 71 walks.
Hoskins deeply exceeded expectations. Drafted in the 5th round in 2014, the imposing right-hander was ranked the 19th best prospect in the Phillies farm system going into 2016. According to Baseball America, his performance this year was good enough to push him into the 6th spot as we look forward to 2017.
Hoskins will turn 24 during Spring Training. After that, he will likely start the season at the AAA level. But if he can build on what he accomplished last year, he’ll be suiting up down here in South Philly sooner than later. Lord knows the Phillies could use the power.