NEW YORK — Rhys Hoskins will be the first Phillies player since 2009 to enter the Home Run Derby and his strategy is pretty simple.
“I think you’ve got to hit more home runs than the other people,” Hoskins said.
Hoskins was selected for the event on Monday in Washington despite not being an all-star. He has 14 homers, eight of which have come in the 30 games since he returned from a 10-day stint on the disabled list with a fractured jaw. Ryan Howard, who won the derby in 2006 and talked to Hoskins last week, is the last Phillies slugger to take part. Perhaps he can pass on some advice. Hoskins has taken part in a few minor-league derbies but has never won.
“I’m saving first place for a good one,” Hoskins said.
Hoskins said he grew up watching the event. It should be fun, he said. He plans to have Phillies minor-league infield coordinator Chris Truby pitch to him. Hoskins said the two have a good bond from the minors and Truby “throws money BP.”
“I’ve heard it’s tough. Hitting for four minutes is not easy,” Hoskins said. “And then you’ve got to do it three times. Hopefully I get some good pitches because throwing BP for that long is hard, too.”