January 29, 2013 |
The banquet season is almost over for Charlie Manuel, who yearns for something other than hefty dinners and handshakes. He wistfully spoke Monday about new batting cages installed in Clearwater, then said there are many "ifs" on his roster from the lineup to the defense and the pitching. "I'm excited about our bullpen," Manuel said before the 109th Philadelphia Sports Writers Association's banquet at the Crowne Plaza in Cherry Hill. So there is that, with two weeks until Phillies spring training opens.
October 19, 2010 |
SAN FRANCISCO - The trio responsible for transcribing Charlie Manuel's Monday afternoon news conference, a task that for them must be the equivalent of graduate school, were moving as doggedly as Roy Oswalt through a stop sign. With an off-day in the National League Championship Series now tied at one game apiece, the Phillies' manager was in an expansive mood during an entertaining session with a few dozen sportswriters in a basement conference room at AT&T Park. Maybe it was the relief produced by his team's Game 2 victory over the Giants on Sunday night.
May 16, 2011
ATLANTA - Once upon a time, Jim Thome was the Phillies starting first baseman. He appeared to be cemented into that spot for the foreseeable future because of his production and the fact that he was a great teammate. Oh, yeah, and because he was guaranteed a lot of money for a lot of years. Then he got hurt, Ryan Howard got his chance and Thome was traded. Jayson Werth was almost an afterthought when he first came to the Phillies. He played well enough to convince the Phillies to platoon him with Geoff Jenkins going into the 2008 season.
April 1, 2011 |
Ninety-four times last season, Charlie Manuel changed the batting order of his lineup. Injuries, ineffectiveness, and indecision prompted a new combination regularly. Yet his starting eight was arranged in exactly the same way for Game 1 as it was in Game 162. For how long this newest Manuel lineup lasts remains to be seen. It could be one day; Houston throws Wandy Rodriguez, a lefthander, on Saturday. But without Chase Utley and Jayson Werth to bookend Ryan Howard, Manuel will go against one of his hard-lined principles.
March 21, 2011 |
CLEARWATER, Fla. - In a week, the Phillies will play their final Grapefruit League game, jump on a bus to the team charter plane, and return to Philadelphia. The questions - and there are many - that Charlie Manuel has about his offense will not be answered in a week's time. The manager will often say he is "concerned" about an issue his team faces. He said it again Sunday. What his players and those who interact with Manuel on a daily basis say is best about his style is the ability to avoid overreaction.
April 17, 2013 |
CINCINNATI - The Phillies and Reds all wore the number 42 on the backs of their uniform jerseys on Monday night in honor of Major League Baseball's annual tribute to Jackie Robinson. Robinson became the first African-American to play in a major league game on April 17, 1947, with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Robinson began his career as a civil rights pioneer and went on to have a Hall of Fame career. Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said on Monday he was a Dodgers fan growing up in Virginia and remembers Robinson starring in an All-Star Game.
December 30, 2009
If 2008 was the year Charlie Manuel finally won the hearts of Philadelphians, 2009 was the year he won their minds. During the Phillies' title run last season, the folksy manager from backwoods Virginia was little more than a feel-good subplot to the sheer dominance displayed by pitchers Cole Hamels and Brad Lidge. But in 2009, his managerial prowess took center stage. His formerly unhittable closer turned in one of the worst regular seasons of any reliever in history. His formerly unhittable ace was a No. 3 starter by the World Series.
October 11, 2008 |
If not for Mama, Charlie Manuel might have been a mediocre college basketball player in Philadelphia instead of the manager of its major league baseball team. It was Mama who urged her third child to accept the $20,000 bonus from the Minnesota Twins instead of the basketball offer at the University of Pennsylvania. A new widow, Manuel's mama saw the bird in the hand - and the chickens that cash would buy, not to mention a new, three-bedroom house for her nine children still in residence in the tiny western Virginia town of Buena Vista.
July 10, 2012 |
With the Phillies falling to 37-50 heading into the all-star break, Charlie Manuel is facing scrutiny concerning his ability to manage the team. Manuel, who has guided the Phillies to five consecutive division championships, said Sunday that he is not worried, even with the Phillies sitting 14 games out of first place in the National League East. "I've got a lot of confidence in myself," he said. "I am a fighter. And not only that, I think I'm a winner. "I think if you go back and look at my baseball career, you might see my .200 batting average in the big leagues and things like that.