According to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com, the Phillies announced this morning that Rule 5 pick Ender Inciarte has won a spot on the team’s Opening Day roster.
Inciarte was selected from the Diamondbacks in December’s Rule 5 Draft. The 22-year-old is batting .276 (8-for-29) with one double and a .364 on-base percentage in 25 games this spring.
Known for his speed and defense in center field, Inciarte owns a .283/.347/.367 batting line over five seasons in the minors. While he has never played a game above the High-A level, the Phillies will keep him around as a fifth outfielder. He must stay on the major league roster all season or be offered back to Arizona.
Christian Yelich simply can’t be stopped. The Brewers outfielder (and defending NL MVP) entered Saturday’s game with a league-leading 11 home runs after swatting two against the Dodgers on Friday night, then clubbed another two homers in the first six innings of Saturday’s game.
The first came on a 2-1 pitch from the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu, who lobbed a changeup toward the bottom of the strike zone before it was lifted up and out to center field for a solo home run in the third inning.
While Chase Anderson and Alex Claudio held down the fort against the Dodgers’ lineup, Yelich prepared for his second blast in the sixth inning — this one a 421-foot double-decker on a first-pitch curveball from Ryu.
Yelich’s 13 home runs not only gave him a stronger grip on the league’s leaderboard, but helped him tie yet another franchise record, too. Per MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, he’s tied with Prince Fielder for the most home runs hit by a Brewers player in a single month, and sits just one home run shy of tying Álex Rodríguez’s 2007 record for most home runs hit within any club’s first 22 games of the season.
It may be far too early to predict which players will finish first in the MVP races this fall, but there’s no denying Yelich has already set himself apart from the competition. Through Saturday’s performance, he’s batting .361/.459/.880 with a 1.329 OPS and MLB-best 31 RBI across 98 PA so far.