The season has begun and there have been ups and downs already. This is the time to find some positives on the Phillies, and it’s not that hard to find…
Bryson Stott is turning into the player that everyone thought he could be. A player that can hit for average, get on base, score runs, the whole thing….Is he there yet? Well, I don’t know about a Hall of Fame career, but he has been a sparkplug for this Phillies team that has needed him badly in the early going. Stott has opened eyes so much that he has been moved to the leadoff spot. He sees the ball well and sees a lot of pitches in his at-bats. Which is huge for that guy on deck or sitting in the dugout). He has also proven he could lay down a bunt here and there.
Stott has been steady at second base as well. Working with a veteran like Trea Turner could only make him better as time continues. Stott at this time has a 16-game hitting streak. Capped by a leadoff homer in Cincinnati on Sunday afternoon. Through 16 games, he has 27 hits and carries a .380 BA into Chicago. He has come into his own. In a world with a lot of question marks surrounding young players, Stott has opened up a lot of eyes and has become a force at the top of the Phillies lineup.
I do not have to look very far to find a second positive, this time let’s head to the bullpen. Jose Alvarado, just the name should bring fear to opposing hitters. Alvarado brings a 100 mph fastball with lots of finish, along with a cutter that would make Mariano Rivera proud. If we can think back to 2022 when he was sent down to work on some things because he was ineffective at the big league level. He came back with a vengeance, he was spectacular at the end of ’22 and has started this season with outlandish numbers.
Alvarado is a strikeout machine, (6.1 IP, 16 K’s). No that is not a typo. He may very well have the best stuff in baseball, and he is now proving it on a daily basis. As a fan, you have to love when Alvarado grabs the ball, as in the Bugs Bunny cartoon, 1-2-3 strikes you’re out !!!!!
The Phillies will continue to grow in 2023, but it is nice to know guys are stepping up in a big way and these two have done that to a “T”!
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