Rhys Hoskins will miss the 2023 season after tearing a cruciate ligament while trying to play groundball in a spring training game on Thursday. On Friday, Phillies President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski called The team feels good Darik Hall Takeover as a regular starting first baseman.
Hall made his MLB debut last season after five years in the minor leagues. The then 26-year-old rookie played in 41 games and hit .250 with nine home runs and an .804 OPS.
In the minor leagues, Hall hit 126 home runs with an OPS of .816. Before his promotion to the major leagues in 2022, he was among the International League leaders at home games at 28.
Despite his major league success as a rookie, Hall had only one hit in just 12 at-bats against left-handed pitchers with seven strikeouts. To become a solid performer at the big league level, he needs to improve against left-handers.
If he doesn’t, the Phillies could put third baseman Alec Bohm in first place against lefties. Bohm has played 24 games at first base during his three-year career. Utility infielder Edmundo Sosa could step in at third base if Bohm gets time initially.
Kody Clemens, who the Phillies acquired from the Detroit Tigers in the offseason, played 13 games at first base for the Tigers in 2022. Hoskins’ injury could give Clemens the inside lead to crack the opening-day squad.
It’s possible that the Phillies are looking for some initial grassroots depth outside of the organization.
Miguel Sano, who made the American League All-Star team in 2017 and hit 30 homers in 2021, is still a free agent.
For now, however, Dombrowski and the Phillies Hall appear to be giving Dombrowski an opportunity to prove themselves.