For the upcoming 2017 season, the Philadelphia Phillies will not only have more new faces but will be a predominantly Latino team. Last year, the Phillies had 12 players of Latino origin who played throughout the season.
The Opening Day roster could have at least 13 Latinos. That is about 48 percent of the 25-man roster. The percentage of players born outside the United States that are part of the Opening Day roster was 27.5 percent.
Each category of statistics within the Phillies were all led by Latino players:
Batting Average – Cesar Hernandez, Venezuela
Stolen Bases – Odubel Hererra, Venezuela
Home Runs & RBI’s – Maikel Franco, Dominican Republic
ERA – Hertor Neris – Dominican Republic
Saves – Jeanmar Gomez, Venezuela
With recent departures of players like Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, the Phillies are looking for new leadership for the future. One of those players expected to lead the team this season is star outfielder Odubel Herrera. He was recently was given a $30.5 million dollar contract for the next few years.
The Phillies new pitching prospects Elniery Garcia, who is from the Dominican Republic and Victor Anaro, who is from Mexico, look at a team of Latinos as an appealing franchise to join. “If I can be on a team full of Latinos, it is great,” said Garcia, ”To be part of the same team, we can do great things together.”
Both players are in the Single-A league in Clearwater, Florida. They both aspire to make that transition from the minors to the majors. “It would be a great experience if I could be a part of this team”, said Anaro, “It feels like family. When you play with so many Latino players, it feels like brothers. And even the American players help you too.”
With fourteen of the Phillies top 30 prospects coming from Latin America the future of the franchise looks bright y con Sabor!