Milwaukee Brewers Sign Rhys Hoskins

by Corey Pieper
Milwaukee Brewers Sign Rhys Hoskins

The Milwaukee Brewers made their first foray into free agency this offseason to sign Rhys Hoskins. Jeff Passan broke the news late yesterday evening on X.

Fantasy Six Pack's founder, Joe Bond, is currently in the process of releasing his positional rankings for fantasy baseball. While Hoskins wasn't in the Top 10 First baseman article for this season, he finished in the top 10 as recently as 2022. It's not hard to see how when you consider that he has a career OPS of 846.

The Brewers had an opening at first base which they filled with one of the top remaining first baseman free agents on the market. Now the question becomes, what does the Milwaukee Brewers being able to sign Rhy Hoskins mean for your fantasy teams? Read on to find out.

2024 Positional Top 10 Rankings

Milwaukee Brewers Sign Rhys Hoskins

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Rhys Hoskins with the Philadelphia Phillies
Embed from Getty Images

When Phillies fans remember Rhys Hoskins' legacy, they will always start with this remarkable moment.

Hoskins has spent his entire career to this point with the Philadelphia Phillies. When healthy, he has been a consistent, middle-of-the-order power bat at the first base position. However, staying healthy has been difficult for Hoskins during the past few seasons. 

Hoskins missed roughly 20 games during the shortened 2020 season with a broken jaw after fouling a ball off his face. In 2021, it was both groin and abdominal injuries that limited him to only 107 games. Last season, was a completely lost season for Hoskins. During the last week of spring training, Hoskins tore his ACL which cost him all of the 2023 season.

At the start of the 2024 season, Hoskins will be 31 years old. That means there are plenty of reasons for optimism that Hoskins will return fully healthy and go back to hitting home runs. Hoskins has been remarkably consistent when he has played. Excluding the shortened season of 2020, he has hit 34, 29, 27, and 30 home runs in his last four healthy seasons. He has had an average between 245 and 247 in four of the past five seasons. The run and RBI fluctuate a bit, but you can expect 80+ of each of those.

Rhys Hoskins's Fantasy Impact with Milwaukee Brewers

First base has been a revolving door for the Milwaukee Brewers since the days of Prince Fielder over a decade ago. Going into last season, there was excitement about what Rowdy Tellez would do in his second full season for the Brewers. After all, he was coming off a 35 home run season. He missed time with injury, but even when he played, didn't look like the same player finishing with just 13 home runs in 311 at-bats. He has since decided to stay in the National League Central, but go to play for the Pittsburgh Pirates.

With Tellez's struggles last season, the Brewers also brought in veteran first basemen Carlos Santana and Mark Canha at the trade deadline. They each were more effective at first base than Tellez, but neither of them cemented their status as the first baseman of the Brewers going forward.

While only a two-year deal (with an opt-out), signing Rhys Hoskins gives the Brewers stability at first base. It also gives them a likely clean-up hitter for this season who should be in line for a big season. Outfielder Christian Yelich, catcher William Contreras, and outfielder Sal Frelick are the three batters who are projected to bat ahead of Hoskins in the Brewers lineup according to RosterResource. All three of those batters are high on-base options which should set Hoskins up for plenty of RBI opportunities.

Rhys Hoskin's Departure Impact on the Phillies

With Hoskins having not played for the Phillies last season, we have a good sense of what the Phillies plan is moving forward. That plan likely involves Bryce Harper staying at first base. After returning from Tommy John surgery, Harper played first base and designated hitter exclusively. Expect that to be the case again this season. When Harper is at DH, the team likely will rotate Alec Bohm to first base to spell him.

Even without Hoskins, the Phillies are still a team with star hitters galore. For fantasy purposes, shortstop Trea Turner and Bryce Harper are going to be first-round picks in 15-team leagues. Catcher J.T. Realmuto, second baseman Bryson Stott, outfielder Kyle Schwarber, outfielder Nick Castellanos, and Alec Bohm are all going as top 175 overall players in ADP data.

The Phillies offense finished top 10 in runs scored, home runs, and OPS last season without Hoskins. There is no reason to believe they won't again this season.

Final Thoughts on Rhys Hoskins

FantasyPros has begun to track ADP data for the year 2024. At this time, Hoskins has an ADP of 208 overall going as the 23rd first baseman. It should be noted that some of those players ranked ahead of him in ADP are likely to contribute to your team at other fantasy positions such as Houston Astros catcher Yainer Diaz.

Expect to see that ADP number rise. First of all, he is now assured of a job assuming he passes the physical on his knee. Secondly, there is no noticeable downshift in park factors. The Philadelphia Phillies' Citizens Bank Park and the Brewers' American Family Field were almost identical for right-handed home run power.

Looking at some of the names above Hoskins in ADP, I think he should be drafted in the 130-150 range. Some of the first base names in that area include Tampa Bay Rays Yandy Diaz, Cleveland Guardians Josh Naylor, and Alec Bohm. Hoskins doesn't offer the average floor of those three players but has the highest power ceiling. If you need power in the mid-rounds, draft Hoskins as your remedy.

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