Updated: May 31, 3:11 p.m.
LOS ANGELES — Here’s an impressive statistic: Rhys Hoskins is 1 for 1 with a double while playing with a broken jaw.
Hoskins learned on Wednesday that he suffered a fractured jaw when he fouled a ball off his face in the ninth inning of Monday night’s game against the Dodgers. The fracture was revealed in a CT scan that was performed after Hoskins stroked a pinch-hit double in the ninth inning of Tuesday’s game. Hoskins had been medically cleared to play in the game and the CT scan was considered routine.
“He is likely to go on the disabled list,” Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said before Wednesday night’s game at Dodger Stadium. “We’re going to send him to Philly tonight to be evaluated by our oral surgeon. The DL is likely, but we could get info from the specialist that leads us in a different direction, so I just want to be open with that.”
Hoskins was officially placed on the 10-day DL on Thursday afternoon.
Hoskins was surprised to hear that he suffered a fracture, especially after being able to play Tuesday night.
“Obviously, it makes it a little bit tougher knowing that I can play with little to no pain,” he said. “But you have to put your health first at some point. It’s just an unfortunate situation.”
Depending on what Thursday’s evaluation in Philadelphia reveals, Hoskins could require surgery or simply be treated with rest. Best case scenario: Just 10 days on the disabled list. But seldom that happens.
“There’s still a degree of optimism, but anytime you’re dealing with [the] DL, there’s also disappointment,” Kapler said. “Rhys, I’ve said all along, is one of our better hitters and one of the top offensive players in baseball in my opinion, so it would be difficult to not have him in the lineup. He’s also an emotional leader in our clubhouse, so if he were to [go on the] DL, there would be disappointment with that.”
Despite having a poor month of May — .161 batting average, two homers, nine RBIs, .551 OPS — Hoskins remains one of the Phillies’ best power bats and top offensive threats. He hit .303 with four homers, 19 RBIs and a .985 OPS in the first month of the season. He will be missed.
Nick Williams will play left field in place of Hoskins with Odubel Herrera in center and Aaron Altherr in right. The Phillies will add a player if Hoskins indeed goes on the DL and it appears to be power-hitting outfielder Dylan Cozens (see story).
The Phils and Dodgers play the finale of a four-game series Thursday then head to San Francisco for three games.
Hoskins is the second Phillies player to suffer a fracture this week. Infielder Pedro Florimon broke his right foot on a foul ball Tuesday night. That injury will require surgery, Kapler said. The Phils brought up corner infielder Mitch Walding from Triple A to replace Florimon.
Walding, 25, was in the starting lineup at third base Wednesday night. A fifth-round draft pick in 2011, Walding made a long journey to his major-league debut. He learned of his promotion in a 2:30 a.m. phone call from Lehigh Valley manager Gary Jones. Walding at first did not recognize the phone number and only answered after Jones kept calling.
“It was rapid-fire calling,” said Walding, who had been asleep. “Thank God I answered and didn’t turn my phone off. It was hard getting back to sleep after that.”
Walding caught a 10 a.m. flight in Philadelphia. He touched down in Los Angeles to a text from Kapler.
“You ready?” Kapler asked.
“I’ve been ready for this my whole life,” Walding responded.