PHILADELPHIA -- One of the reasons the Phillies love Scott Kingery is because he can fly around the bases.He is one of the fastest runners in baseball, in fact.Statcast™ released its first "Sprint Speed" leaderboard on Thursday. It measures "feet per second in a player's fastest one-second window" on individual
PHILADELPHIA -- One of the reasons the Phillies love Scott Kingery is because he can fly around the bases.
He is one of the fastest runners in baseball, in fact.
Statcast™ released its first "Sprint Speed" leaderboard on Thursday. It measures "feet per second in a player's fastest one-second window" on individual plays. Kingery ranks eighth in baseball, averaging 29.4 feet per second. Minnesota's Byron Buxton is fastest at 30.5 feet per second. The MLB average on a competitive play is 27 feet per second.
Jorge Alfaro is the fastest catcher in baseball at 27.7 feet per second. He is one of only two catchers in baseball with above average speed.
Cesar Hernandez is the fourth-fastest second baseman at 28.7 feet per second. Aaron Altherr (28.1) is listed sixth amongst right fielders.
J.P. Crawford (27.9) and Nick Williams (27.4) are the other Phillies with above-average speed. Odubel Herrera (26.9), Andrew Knapp (26.4), Rhys Hoskins (26.1), Carlos Santana (25.5) and Maikel Franco (25.1) have below-average speed.
Hunter to make rehab appearance
Phillies right-hander Tommy Hunter is scheduled to make a rehab appearance Friday night with Double-A Reading.
Hunter has been on the DL since the beginning of the season because of a strained right hamstring. He made his first rehab appearance Tuesday with Class A Advanced Clearwater. Manager Gabe Kapler indicated earlier this week that Hunter could make three rehab appearances before he rejoins the team, but that plan has not been finalized.
Kapler said he is looking forward to Hunter joining the bullpen, particularly because his cutter is effective against left-handers. Left-handed hitters posted a .501 OPS against Hunter last season. Right-handers had a .649 OPS.
The pitcher plan
Phillies pitchers have hit eighth seven times in the team's 15 National League games.
Kapler does not arbitrarily drop his pitchers into the No. 8 hole. There are reasons, but he declined a deep dive into the specifics.
"A lot of it is, when do we feel like we want somebody on base in front of our best hitters, like Cesar, Santana, Odubel, Hoskins?" Kapler said. "Who can we put on base in front of them? Sometimes it might be, where do we want to pinch-hit? But there are a number of factors that go into it, that's true. I'm not going to give away any types of strategy, but I'd say there are a variety of factors that go into these decisions."
Nick Pivetta has hit eighth in each of his four starts. Aaron Nola and Jacob Arrieta have hit ninth in each of theirs. Only Vince Velasquez and Ben Lively have alternated between the Nos. 8 and 9 spots.
Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and listen to his podcast.