The Philadelphia Phillies are rolling right now, in large part thanks to the slugging of Nick Castellanos.
After winning Game 1 of their NLCS matchup against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday night, Philly is just seven wins away from its first World Series title since 2008. Outfielder Nick Castellanos has played a major role since he's recently morphed into a modern-day version of Reggie Jackson.
No, really — that's not a joke. It actually has happened.
In Philadelphia's 5-3 victory in Game 1, Castellanos hit this solo home run:
NICK CASTELLANOS HAS HIT FIVE HOME RUNS IN THE LAST THREE GAMES pic.twitter.com/gSzMWzBvOg
— Talkin? Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) October 17, 2023
As we can see above, that's Casty's fifth home run in his last three games played. He also had a pair of two-homer performances in Games 3 and 4 of their NLDS matchup against the Atlanta Braves. The outfielder has already become the first player in postseason history to produce multi-homer performances in consecutive games. But this latest homer has put him in Mr. October territory.
There are now only two players in baseball history who have slugged five homers in the span of three postseason games: Nick Castellanos and Reggie Jackson.
players with 5 HR in a 3-game postseason span:
Reggie Jackson https://t.co/aUdiYTXVCU
— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) October 17, 2023
When you find yourself in a club at any time with only Reggie Jackson, you know you're doing something right — especially when it has something to do with postseason production.
Any kind of positive October performance is huge because these moments are magnified so much. But when we compare Castellanos' body of work from the 2022 postseason to what he's currently doing, it's even more eye-opening. In 69 plate appearances last year during the Phillies' World Series run, the right-handed hitter slashed .185/.232/.246. This included no homers, seven RBIs and eight runs scored in 17 games played.
So far in 2023, Castellanos has suited up for seven postseason games (29 plate appearances). His triple slash is a very healthy .370/.414/1.000 with five homers, six RBIs and seven runs scored. Oh, and as if those five dingers weren't already enough, the outfielder has also added two doubles to his ledger.
Baseball's lights are brightest in October. After struggling to be a consistent contributor for the Phillies in 2022, he's become a crucial piece of the puzzle as they attempt to successfully defend their National League crown and return to the World Series.
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