Spencer Howard scratched, Hoskins homers, Brad Miller injury update, and more from Spring Training
Spencer Howard was scheduled to pitch in relief of Chase Anderson yesterday against the New York Yankees in Tampa. That did not happen. Howard experienced back spasms on Monday morning and Girardi scratched him from the lineup. Girardi did state after the game, that they expect Howard to be available to pitch again in the next couple days, so the injury itself does not seem to be very alarming.
Anderson, who Spencer Howard is attempting to catch in the race for the fifth and final roster spot, pitched well again yesterday, a day after projected number four starter Matt Moore pitched well on Sunday. Anderson threw three scoreless innings yesterday, allowing two hits and two walks, while striking out four. The Phillies still have to figure out whether or not they will keep Howard in the bullpen or possibly as a tandem with Anderson in the fifth and final rotation spot, or if they will send him to Triple-A to pitch on a regular rotation.
Archie Bradley pitched an inning in relief, allowing two hits, and one earned run. Hector Neris and Jose Alvarado combined to throw two innings, with three punch-outs, a walk, and one hit allowed. Bullpen hopeful Hector Rondon continues to struggle and got the loss on the day, allowing one hit, three earned runs, and walking two. The Phillies lost the game 4-2 to the Yankees in Tampa.
In the lineup, the Phillies are still working through a centerfield position battle. Scott Kingery, Roman Quinn, and seemingly the frontrunner for the job, Odubel Herrera, were all in the lineup yesterday. None of them failed to standout yet again. Kingery went 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He is now slashing .120/.185/.280 in Spring Training. Roman Quinn went 1-for-3 and is slashing .300/.364/.400 in Spring Training. Odubel Herrera went 0-for-3 and is slashing .261/.261/.522 in Spring Training.
We need to see more of Mickey Moniak. Mickey Moniak is slashing .400/.400/1.067 this Spring with six hits, five extra base hits, two home runs, two RBI, and three runs scored. The dark horse candidate for centerfield entered Spring Training much bigger and stronger than year’s past. With injuries to Adam Haseley, the Phillies have a few unanswered questions in the outfield. I would love to see Moniak emerge out of Spring on the Opening Day roster, although he’s still considered a long shot and might be better suited playing every day in Triple-A.
Rhys Hoskins hit a home run to deep center yesterday, which was great to see from Rhys, who is coming off offseason elbow surgery. Hoskins is having an expected slow start to Spring Training, slashing .200/.250/.650 with three hits, three runs, one home run, two RBI, and one stolen base. Prayers up to the Hoskins family, who lost their beloved dog Rookie yesterday.
Brad Miller got good results back after getting an MRI on his tweaked rib cage. The results showed little-to-no damage and Girardi hopes to re-evaluate him next week. Miller is expected to be ready for Opening Day. Bamboo Brad re-signed with the Phillies this offseason and has played well this Spring, slashing .294/.333/.804 with five hits, three runs, one home run, and two RBI.
The Phillies will send Aaron Nola to the mound today vs. the Toronto Blue Jays.