Memory can be a fickle thing. When one thinks back to each time the Phillies face a young, exciting hurler for the first time, it usually feels like that pitcher will show exactly what he was so touted when he faces the Phillies. It always feels like that rookie has his best start when facing the Phillies, no matter his struggles. Logan Gilbert is definitely not a rookie, having debuted last year for Seattle, but he hadn’t lived up to his top prospect status just yet. He’s been good, but it felt like when he got his turn against the Phillies, it would be one of those “That’s the day he became the ace” type starts.
Early on, it felt like that. Even though he was going deep into counts against the hitters, he was dispatching them with relative ease. Heading into the fourth inning, Gilbert had the lead thanks to a hilariously poor, non-overturned call that gave Seattle a man on second that was singled in by phenom Julio Rodriguez, making it 1-0. Gilbert would serve up a single to Alec Bohm, then a walk to Bryce Harper before getting Nick Castellanos to fly out and put runners on the corners. Harper stole second, Jean Segura walked and all of a sudden, Gilbert was facing Rhys Hoskins with the bases loaded and one out.
Prior to coming to Seattle, Hoskins was struggling. We all are aware of the cold streak he goes through each year. It usually lasts a week to 10 days, but this one was different. Hoskins looked helpless during at bats, swinging through fastballs right down the middle of the plate instead of his patented pop up to second. When he’s cold, he can almost feel like clockwork with his outs. Lately, something about the Pacific Northwest air has revived him. He homered Monday and Tuesday and had some decent swings his first time facing Gilbert in the second inning. Here, not only did he get a good pitch, he put maybe his best swing of the year on the pitch and launched a missile into left field.
If you're gonna hit the ball, make it grand Rhys pic.twitter.com/GINDyLAdsA— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) May 11, 2022
I think we have officially entered the Rhys Hoskins Hot Streak.
That grand slam made it 4-1 and Bailey Falter, called up to help the pitching staff, made that lead stand. Falter was moving everything he had around the zone, showing solid command of his pitches, particularly to his glove side like Ben Davis pointed out, and dominated the Mariners’ lineup. Things got dicey in the seventh when Jose Alvarado came in because...of course. Dylan Moore drew a one out walk, then stole second on Alvarado. Adam Frazier drew a two out walk that mercifully ended Alvarado’s day, but brought in was
right-handed Alvarado Jeurys Familia, who allowed a single to Ty France that got Seattle within two.
But that was it. Familia and Corey Knebel would shut down the Mariners the rest of the way and the Phillies left Seattle with <gasp> a series win!
If we’ve entered Hoskins Hot Zone, things are going to go well for the offense. Heading to Los Angeles, we’ll have to hope this team can keep this going.