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2022 Player Report Card: Bryson Stott

2022 was a season of Firsts to remember for Bryson Stott

MLB: San Diego Padres at Philadelphia Phillies Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Perhaps no one benefitted more from the Phillies’ mid-season change at manager than Bryson Stott. It’s no secret that the first few months of his Major League career left much to be desired. When he was actually given the opportunity to play, he looked out of place, timid, and at times simply unprepared for what came at him. But then the Phillies fired Joe Girardi, Rob Thomson took over, and suddenly Stott was playing like the cornerstone middle-infielder the franchise hasn’t had since Chase Utley was traded in 2015. It’s amazing the difference a good manager can make.

The biggest visible change pre- and post-managerial change was in the mood around the clubhouse, and the number one example of that was Bryson Stott. Beyond his night-to-day change on the field, Stott also blossomed into an energetic, amusing, and goofy character off the field. From his “Sneaky Stott” post-game interview water cup tradition to his hilarious playoff clubhouse celebrations, he became the poster child for playing hard, but also having fun and enjoying the ride along the way.

As a rookie, Stott’s whole season was a highlight reel of career firsts — both good and bad. First hits, homers, walk-offs, and playoffs. But also first errors, strikeouts, and disappointments. Overall, the most encouraging thing about his season was watching him turn into a confident every-day starter that the Phillies can rely on. With good management, more coaching, and more Major League experience, he’s only going to continue to get better.

2022 stats: .234/.295/.358, 10 HR, 49 RBI, 19.1 K%, 7.7 BB%, 83 wRC+, 1.3 WAR

The Good

Stott definitely found his footing in the second half of the season, slashing .276/.331/.404 in the second half. August and September were by far his most successful months of the regular season.

While he took a small step back at the plate in the playoffs, he also came up big when he needed to. All three of his playoff RBI came at crucial moments. In game 1 of the Wild Card series, Stott’s RBI fielder’s choice gave the Phillies the eventual winning run. In game 3 of the NLDS, he worked a nine-pitch at bat that culminated in an RBI double to right to score the first run of the game. The Braves then intentionally walked Schwarber, which set up Hoskins’s three-run bat-spike homer. In game 4 of the NLCS, he singled to tie the game and fully erase the 4-run deficit the Phillies fell into in the first inning. They needed him in those moments, and he showed up.

The Bad

Stott struggled mightily in the beginning of the season, especially with having a consistent approach at the plate. He hit just .188/.255/.307 in the first half, including a horrid .116/.192/.140 month of May. Was his rough start a result of making the jump to the Majors? Was it a result of being stifled by a poor manager? We may never know. What’s important is that he eventually figured it out.

The Future

As a rookie in 2022, Stott still has a long future with the Phillies. The only question is what position he’ll play. If the Phillies sign one of the high-end shortstops available through the free agency market as expected, Stott will be moved to second base. If they don’t, he’s still a viable option at short.

Final Grade: B