Kody Clemens Is Re-Writing His Story in 2024

Philadelphia Phillies’ Kody Clemens, center, is doused by Bryson Stott after the Phillies won a baseball game against the Washington Nationals, Saturday, May 18, 2024, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Captain America, Iron Man, and Kody Clemens?

While they might not be the Avengers, the Phillies are playing like the world’s best. With another series win over the Nationals, they continue to hold the best record in Major League Baseball.

This past Saturday night, a new hero emerged for the Phillies as Kody Clemens blasted a solo home run with two outs in the ninth inning. This tied the game, which led to a Phillies walk-off win during the bottom of the 10th frame.

Clemens played the role of superhero, and despite his back-and-forth status on the roster this season, this isn’t the first time he has pulled through when the Phillies needed him. As a player fighting for his spot in the Major Leagues, you cannot deny that Clemens is giving it his all.

Flashback to 2023

Heading into the 2023 season, the Phillies made a deal with the Detroit Tigers for Gregory Soto and Kody Clemens. In return, they traded away fan favorites Matt Vierling and Nick Maton to complete the deal.

At the time of the trade, many felt as though the deal was centered around Gregory Soto, the hard-throwing left-handed closer for the Tigers. Fresh off a trip to the World Series, the Phillies were looking to add to their already strong bullpen. It was marked by many as the “Gregory Soto” trade.

While Soto has been solid for the Phillies in his tenure, the other player, Kody Clemens, might be reshaping his history. Clemens was looked at as a throw-in at the time of the deal, and now you could argue he was the more important player in the deal.

At the start of 2023, Kody started the season in Triple-A Leigh Valley. After injuries to Rhys Hoskins and Darick Hall, he was called up to the Majors and given an opportunity to play. While his numbers might not pop off the charts, his hitting always seemed to be timely.

On June 8th, 2023, the utility player found himself in a similar spot to Saturday night. Against his former club, Clemens hit a walk-off single for the victory. Not only was it a feel-good moment, but to do it against his former club had to be a sweet feeling.

Once Bryce Harper returned to play first base, Kody was sent back to the Iron Pigs. He finished the season in Triple-A, where he smashed 18 home runs, 52 runs batted in, and held an OPS of .937 across his 62 games.

Aaron Nola Kody Clemens
The Phanatic taking a picture of Kody Clemens. Photo Credit Matt Watson / Philly Sports Network

Nothing New for Kody Clemens

After having one of the biggest hits of his big league career, Kody Clemens certainly could have soaked it in early Sunday morning.

Soaking it in wasn’t an option, as he was the first player on the field to warm up. Working with infield coach Bobby Dickerson, Clemens took ground balls at second as his teammates began to work their way onto the field.

Despite taking buckets of balls, he stayed in the infield to work with Edmundo Sosa, who was also looking to get some work in.

It shows a player who is looking to make an impact and keep his spot on the team. Clemens wants nothing more than to be in the Major Leagues, and he has certainly proven he can play at this level. While the Phillies’ active roster is tough to crack, he knows his role.

As Trea Turner continues to work his way back off the injured list, Clemens is going to get a chance to play. I would expect him to continue carving out moments in a Phillies’ uniform by playing hard, working hard, and shining in his opportunities.

Weekend Warrior

Clemens would get the start on Sunday afternoon with a right-handed starter on the mound.

Once again trying to make the most of his opportunities, Kody would get the game’s first hit. A double in the right-field corner put him in scoring position. He would then score on a Nick Castellanos single.

Later in the ballgame, he would face another clutch situation. With runners at the corners and two outs, the Nationals brought LHP Robert Garcia into the game to try to end the frame. Rob Thomson stuck with Clemens, who rewarded his skipper with an RBI double to right. This drove in two runs and gave the Phillies a 5-3 lead. After the game Thomson mentioned riding the hot hand and how he trusted Kody in that spot.

Nick Castellanos would again single home Kody, making it a 6-3 game. A little deja vu action for the Phillies from earlier in the game helped extend the lead against the Washington bullpen. Thanks to Clemens’ efforts, the Phillies would go on to win Sunday’s game 11-5 against the Nationals.

The Story Continues

As we move past what was a successful weekend for the Phillies and Kody Clemens, I think it would be wise to reset his outlook over the next couple of weeks.

While Trea Turner continues to get closer to playing once more, it appears as if Clemens’s time on the roster may be limited. While the Phillies have alternative players they can remove from the roster, Kody is the only one with minor-league options. Chances are, he will get sent back to Triple-A.

As the Phillies continue to win, knowing the depth they hold in the minor leagues is reassuring. If the club needs a player to be called up in a pinch, Kody Clemens has proven to be that guy. Watching him play the remainder of Turner’s IL time should be looked at with the understanding he has filled his role and gone beyond expectations.

Who knows, he might just have a few more heroic moments built into his story.

Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)