Tommy Joseph was outrighted off the Phillies 40-man roster after the 2015 season, but he went unclaimed and looked to prove himself as a first baseman after years of missed at-bats in the minors due to the numerous concussions he suffered while catching. He produced immediately after a mid-May promotion to the big leagues, hitting .323 with seven home runs and a 1.010 OPS in his first 21 games while leaping Ryan Howard on the depth chart. Joseph slumped badly from mid-June into early July as pitchers adjusted to him by throwing more offspeed stuff. He adjusted back, hitting .259 with 10 home runs and an .829 OPS over 162 at-bats in the second half. Joseph walked at a 3.7 percent clip in the first half, but improved that to 8.6 percent while also cutting his strikeout rate from 24.7 percent to 18.9 percent after the All-Star break. Joseph was lethal against lefties last season, and more than held his own against righties. With Ryan Howard out of the picture, Joseph could offer 30-homer pop in his first full season as the everyday first baseman.
Joseph (hand) came off the bench Sunday and hit a double in his only at-bat. Joseph had not played in four days after being hit in the left hand by a pitch. He is expected to rejoin the starting lineup Tuesday, as the Phillies are off Monday.
Joseph (hand) is not listed in Saturday's or Sunday's lineups, Matt Breen of The Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Joseph said he is available to play Saturday, but it looks like the Phillies intend to hold him out of action until Tuesday with an off day this Monday. The young slugger was able to practice and hit in the cage Saturday. He has been sidelined since last Tuesday due to bruising on his hand after being hit by a pitch.
Joseph (hand) is not in the Phillies' Grapefruit League lineup Friday, Todd Zolecki of MLB.com reports. The masher still hasn't seen any game action since his left hand was hit by a pitch Tuesday. The Phillies will not rush him back, especially since he has a couple weeks left to sneak in a few at-bats. The 25-year-old is batting .200 but has launched two home runs and driven in six runs over 35 spring at-bats, so Joseph may not need much more work to convince the club he's ready for Opening Day. Of course, prudent fantasy drafters should monitor his performance upon his return.
Joseph (hand) is not in the lineup for Thursday's Grapefruit League game. Andrew Knapp replaces him at first base, batting sixth. Joseph was plunked on the left hand by a pitch Tuesday and sat out Wednesday. His rest will continue, though it doesn't seem as if he'll miss much time, considering X-rays did not reveal a fracture. The 25-year-old should return to action in the coming days, barring a setback.
Joseph (hand) is still experiencing soreness and will not play in Wednesday's Grapefruit League matchup with the Yankees, Meghan Montemurro of The News Journal reports. Montemurro also added that Joseph tried to take some swings Wednesday but came away with his hand feeling uncomfortable. Consider the 26-year-old day-to-day until he proves he can swing a bat again.