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Hoskins arrives early to work in outfield

After primarily playing 1B, second year star penciled into OF for 2018
MLB.com

Pitchers and catchers don't report to camp until Wednesday, but Rhys Hoskins has already been putting in work at the Phillies' facility in Clearwater, Fla., for a week.

The 24-year-old slugger reported early, as he prepares for his first full season in the Majors. Hoskins broke out as a rookie in 2017, setting a new record with 18 home runs in his first 50 games.

Pitchers and catchers don't report to camp until Wednesday, but Rhys Hoskins has already been putting in work at the Phillies' facility in Clearwater, Fla., for a week.

The 24-year-old slugger reported early, as he prepares for his first full season in the Majors. Hoskins broke out as a rookie in 2017, setting a new record with 18 home runs in his first 50 games.

"It's always good coming from the West Coast to get out to Florida a little early, get acclimated so when camp comes and starts, we can hit the ground running," Hoskins said.

Part of the reason Hoskins arrived in Clearwater early was to get additional outfield work. Hoskins split time between left field and first base in 2017, but the Phillies signed free-agent first baseman Carlos Santana to a three-year deal in December, meaning Hoskins will primarily play in left this season.

"The outfield is coming along," Hoskins said. "There's some footwork stuff, catching ground balls, trying to get that right so we can be as efficient as possible when we're trying to throw runners out. Just little things like that, that obviously is quite different when you step on the infield."

Hoskins is spending these pre-camp days working with the organization's outfield coordinator, Andy Abad, and former MLB outfielder Sam Fuld, who was hired in November for a front-office role as the club's Major League player information coordinator.

"[Our day] is just trying to get out feet under us, being used to being at the field all day again," Hoskins said. "We'll start at about 9:30 here, stretch, we'll do our outfield work, some infield work every other day for me. We'll take [batting practice], then we'll get our workout in and do all the mobility and flexibility stuff that we need to do to try to stay as healthy as we can throughout the season."

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.

Philadelphia Phillies, Rhys Hoskins