June 19, 2015 |
WE'D REACHED the part of the process where we were supposed to ask the manager solemn questions about his future, and Ryne Sandberg seemed to understand that as he sat in the dugout at Citizens Bank Park yesterday. The Phillies were coming off an embarrassment that had been brewing for months, a 19-3 loss in which a starting pitcher strained a hamstring covering home, a reliever gave up five home runs, a rightfielder threw 48 pitches, and a pitching coach was forced to wave the white towel - literally - because the bullpen phone was off the hook.
March 24, 2015 |
FORT MYERS, Fla. - With the three hitters projected to hit in the middle of the batting order past their 35th birthdays, the regular production expected from the Phillies' offense is uncertain at best. With Cliff Lee likely gone for the duration of the season and the likelihood that Cole Hamels could be traded before the end of the summer, the formerly formidable starting rotation is more than vulnerable. It's a 1-2 punch that has led some to believe to Phillies could flirt with 100 losses in 2015.
October 2, 2014 |
PITCHING COACH Bob McClure, hitting coach Steve Henderson, bench coach Larry Bowa and the rest of the Phillies coaching staff will not be the scapegoats for a last-place season. The Phillies announced yesterday that all of the members of manager Ryne Sandberg's coaching staff have been asked to return for the 2015 season. Since the regular season does not begin for 6 months, that doesn't necessarily mean the 2014 staff will return in full for 2015. But apparently they've at least been tendered contracts for next season.
September 30, 2014 |
THE FIRST MAN to exit did so on a late July night. One could argue he was the same batting coach who helped give the Phillies the most successful offensive period they'd ever had: the most runs in the National League in 2006 and 2007. A World Series title in 2008. But on July 22, 2010, after an offseason in which they traded for Roy Halladay and traded away Cliff Lee and signed Danys Baez to a 2-year deal, the Phillies were a mere three games over .500 while averaging 4.6 runs per game.
February 23, 2014 |
CLEARWATER, Fla. - When Phillippe Aumont stepped onto a mound for the first time during spring training, Larry Andersen worked on an adjacent field. Andersen glanced at the seven pitchers about to throw bullpen sessions, and the 6-foot-7 Canadian towered above them all. Andersen viewed Aumont's maddening flashes of brilliance from a distance in his role as Phillies radio analyst. This spring, as a guest instructor, Andersen is charged with molding the younger arms. He dashed that morning toward Aumont.
February 22, 2014 |
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - One of them was celebrated upon departure. The other one just left. They had a day at the diner for Charlie Manuel shortly after the Phillies fired him in August. The first 10 callers to WIP-FM got to worship Uncle Charlie. So did the next 10, and the 10 after that. Rich Dubee, on the other hand, stayed to the miserable end of the Phillies' 2013 season and was told almost immediately afterward that the team would replace him as the pitching coach. Manuel, of course, was the Phillies' avuncular manager for nearly nine years, and once he survived his fruitless first two seasons and led the team to a World Series victory and a half-decade of divisional dominance, it was pretty clear how he'd be remembered in Philadelphia.
December 11, 2013 |
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - If the true measure of a man comes from what his friends and co-workers say about him, Roy Halladay is a pretty complete person, let alone baseball player. He is as revered as any athlete to play in Philadelphia in the last quarter century. In the hour or so after Halladay's retirement became official yesterday, an outpouring of support and well wishes found its way to Walt Disney World's Swan and Dolphin Resort, site of baseball's winter meetings, where Halladay said goodbye to the game.
November 22, 2013 |
THE PHILLIES' long, strange journey in locating a pitching coach for the 2014 season has come to an end. More than 7 weeks since firing Rich Dubee, the Phillies replaced him with Bob McClure. CSNPhilly.com was the first to report the hire yesterday morning. "Bob brings a wealth of experience to our staff," manager Ryne Sandberg said in a press release. "We talked to many good candidates and couldn't be more pleased to add 'Mac' as our pitching coach. " Additionally, the Phils retained Rod Nichols as bullpen coach and Jesus Tiamo as bullpen catcher.
November 20, 2013 |
Ruben Amaro Jr. said he would not wait for Carlos Ruiz, but the true intentions of the Phillies general manager were understood. For all of September, Amaro spoke about retaining his longtime catcher. A reunion made sense: The Phillies value familiarity, and the best available alternatives could not hit lefthanded pitching. When Ruiz emerged as a priority for the defending world champion Boston Red Sox, a source said, the Phillies acted to secure the stocky Panamanian they once signed for $8,000 as a second baseman.
October 24, 2013
YESTERDAY brought with it a reminder that the Phillies' deliberate search for a pitching coach might not be entirely their choice. The Reds' decision to hire Bryan Price as their manager removed one potential candidate from the market, and there could be more dominoes that need to fall before the Phillies are able to zero in on a candidate. Price, a former consultant with the Phillies who worked under Pat Gillick in Seattle, now will be in the market for his own pitching coach, putting the Reds in the same company as the Orioles and Diamondbacks.