Rhys Hoskins is a hungry dog.
Today, three different media outlets — ESPN, MLB.com and USA Today — released their latest MLB Power Rankings, and one would think that given the 5-1 week the Phils had against the Boston Red Sox and Miami Marlins, the team would be on the rise.
MLB.com is clearly on board, ranking the Phils as the 5th-best team in baseball right now.
However, USA Today’s rankings have the Phillies inside the top-10, but just barely, at No. 10, down one spot from last week, with the Cubs, Brewers, Dodgers and Diamondbacks all ahead of them. Atlanta is one spot behind Philadelphia.
But perhaps the most insulting of all may have come from ESPN.
After this weekend's sweep, there's only one choice for No. 1 in our MLB Power Rankings. pic.twitter.com/wCmAsCh6YR— ESPN (@espn) August 6, 2018
That’s right, you don’t see the Phillies there in the top-10 do you? And making matters even worse, the Braves — THE TEAM THAT TRAILS THE PHILLIES BY 1.5 GAMES IN THE NL EAST — is in front of the Phils.
Look, you can make the argument that, based on run differential, the Braves have been the better team. Their +70 run differential is almost double the Phils’ +37. And if that’s the reason, then I guess you can’t argue with it. But it’s still strange to rank the team in second — a team that is just as ahead of schedule and full of young players as the Phils — ahead of the first place team.
This fact was not lost on Rhys Hoskins.
Anyone remember what happened the last time a Philly sports team was the underdog? #hungrydogs https://t.co/FIa7x61FYr— Rhys Hoskins (@rhyshoskins) August 6, 2018
Why yes, Rhys. Yes I do.
With the addition of Asdrubal Cabrera, the team’s massive offensive hole at shortstop has been fixed, and the lineup is much deeper than it had been. When catcher Wilson Ramos arrives, it’ll get even deeper.
There is no better starting rotation in the National League than the Phils’ unit, and the bullpen has also been one of the league’s best over the last six weeks.
As good as the Phillies have been, they could be getting better at just the right time, just like another Philadelphia team did late last year.
HUNGRY DOGS RUN FASTER.