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BUSINESS
March 23, 2015 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Gov. Wolf is trying to push Wall Street out of Harrisburg. He wants the two big employee retirement systems, SERS (for state workers) and PSERS (for public school staff), to reverse their long reliance on high-fee managers. These firms collected more than $600 million in fees from the plans last year - plus a share of liquidation profits from the state's private-equity investments, which Pennsylvania doesn't count. Despite all the creative investing, years of underfunding have left SERS and PSERS with multibillion- dollar gaps between the assets they own and the checks they will owe. The shortfall has been addressed in recent years by increasing taxpayer "contributions," which Wolf wants to stabilize.
SPORTS
March 22, 2015 | By Matt Breen, Inquirer Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Maikel Franco's belongings were packed in a red duffel bag. His locker was nearly empty. The Phillies prospect clutched three bats in each hand and walked out of the clubhouse Friday morning. His time in major-league camp was up. The Phillies optioned the 22-year-old to minor-league camp after a slow start this spring. Franco hit .200 in 30 at-bats. All six of his hits were singles. He was projected to compete with Cody Asche for the starting job at third base. Franco failed to be much of a threat.
SPORTS
March 22, 2015
BRADENTON, Fla. - Domonic Brown underwent an MRI exam Friday, a day after he was removed from a game because of a sore left Achilles tendon. The results showed no tear but revealed moderate tendinitis, a team spokesman said after the team's 6-5 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. He is listed as day-to-day, but it could be a week until he returns to the field. The rightfielder said his Achilles has been bothering him for two weeks. He left Thursday's win against the New York Yankees in the third inning.
SPORTS
March 22, 2015 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
BRADENTON, Fla. - Over the winter, when hedging bets on his roster for the upcoming year, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said that "in a perfect world" corner-infield prospect Maikel Franco would begin the season in the minor leagues. Barring an injury, Amaro will get his wish. Yesterday morning, the Phillies made the decision to start Franco at Triple A Lehigh Valley when the season gets underway in 3 weeks. Franco was optioned to minor league camp, along with pitchers Nefi Ogando and Joely Rodriguez.
SPORTS
March 21, 2015 | By Matt Breen, Inquirer Staff Writer
TAMPA, Fla. - When Cameron Rupp enrolled in 2007 at the University of Texas, he became an education major. If his baseball career did not pan out, he planned to be a high school coach. His father coached Rupp's baseball and football teams when Rupp was growing up. His uncle was a college baseball coach. "I guess I'd have to be a teacher if I wanted to be a coach. So I went that route," Rupp said before Thursday night's game against the New York Yankees. "But it worked out this way. " Rupp put his coaching plans on hold when the Phillies drafted him in 2010.
SPORTS
March 20, 2015 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
TAMPA, Fla. - If there are any hitters who shouldn't have trouble fine-tuning their swings in the spring, it's the players playing regularly in the winter. But only two players, Freddy Galvis and Odubel Herrera, collected more at-bats than Maikel Franco in their respective winter ball leagues. Franco hit .272 (40-for-147) with an .805 OPS in 38 games in the Dominican Winter League, hitting two of his seven home runs in the eight-game playoff series to end the season in January. After his first month in Phillies camp, however, Franco has had trouble keeping his bat in gear.
SPORTS
March 20, 2015 | By Jake Kaplan, Inquirer Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Seemingly each time they discuss Elvis Araujo, Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg and pitching coach Bob McClure refer to the angle at which the ball travels from the pitcher's left hand to home plate. Araujo, in other words, stands an imposing 6-foot-6, 280 pounds. His fastball, which he complements with a slider and change-up, peaked this week at 97 miles per hour on the Bright House Field radar gun. In five Grapefruit League innings, he has allowed only two hits.
NEWS
March 20, 2015 | Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
Former Philadelphia City Councilman James F. Kenney won a coveted endorsement for his mayoral bid Wednesday evening from the union that represents the city's police officers. Kenney, already on a roll with other recent endorsements, was among four candidates seeking the support of Lodge 5 of the Fraternal Order of Police, president John McNesby said. Kenney received more than 80 percent of the vote from the union's board of directors, which has about 180 members, McNesby said.
SPORTS
March 20, 2015 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
It's not officially over for Cliff Lee. All he needs is a miracle, and he could be back throwing on a mound near you before the end of the summer. Even he concedes that is unlikely. "It's fairly likely it will remain the same," the Phillies lefthander said Monday at Bright House Field after the team placed him on the 60-day disabled list and announced that he will attempt a third rehab of his aching left elbow. Surgery has been recommended, but that would end Lee's season and tenure with the Phillies.
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