The Reading Fightin Phils were well represented Tuesday night in the Double A Eastern League Home Run Derby. Catcher Jorge Alfaro, first baseman Rhys Hoskins and outfielder Dylan Cozens all participated, with Alfaro making it all the way to the final round.
Alfaro came up one home run short of winning it all. He went deep 10 times in the first round, 10 times in the second round and nine times in the final round, finishing with 29. Erie SeaWolves (Tigers affiliate) outfielder Jason Krizan won the contest with 30.
Interestingly, the top two totals came from players who aren't near the top of the Eastern League home run leaderboard. Krizan has just eight on the season in 356 plate appearances. Alfaro has 11 in 273 plate appearances, but his raw power could make him a 20-plus home run hitter in the majors someday.
Neither Hoskins nor Cozens — the Eastern League leaders in home runs this season with 25 and 24, respectively — made it out of the first round of Tuesday's derby. Hoskins hit six homers and Cozens hit five.
The Eastern League All-Star Game is Wednesday night at Canal Park in Akron, Ohio. Reading, which at 63-27 is eight games better than any team in the league, has six All-Stars: Hoskins, Cozens, Alfaro, second baseman Jesmuel Valentin and pitchers Nick Pivetta and Hoby Milner.