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Ryne Sandberg

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November 25, 2013 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
PHOENIX - Ryne Sandberg needs a ride. His wife, Margaret, reserved the light blue SUV, the couple's lone vehicle at this moment - for errands on a serene autumn afternoon in the desert. Sandberg examines the 19 olive trees that line his property. They are blooming. Their pilfered seeds blacken the grass because, wouldn't you know it, the Sandbergs have a quail problem. Errant golf balls sometimes litter the immaculate backyard. The 13th hole sits a short wedge beyond Sandberg's fence.
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August 17, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN FRANCISCO - There will come a point, Ryne Sandberg said, when the Phillies manager can discuss a playing-time strategy with his boss, Ruben Amaro Jr. At least, that is what Sandberg expects. The Phillies entered Friday on pace for 71 wins; their odds at a postseason berth were calculated at 0.2 percent, according to FanGraphs.com, but not small enough to force Amaro into a conversation about the future. "Not yet," Sandberg said. He laughed. "So the challenge continues. " The manager's position is not an enviable one. He must balance expensive contracts with sensitive personalities and executives' wishes.
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October 21, 2012 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Staff Writer
Ryne Sandberg will make his second big-league debut with the Phillies in April and it will be fascinating to see where this career path leads him. The last time Sandberg debuted in a Phillies uniform, he was a 21-year-old infielder launching what became a Hall of Fame career. It became a painful experience for the Phillies and their fans to witness. Sandberg's resumé was crafted in Chicago after Cubs general manager Dallas Green persuaded his former team to "throw in" the young infielder as part of a deal that shipped shortstop Larry Bowa out of Philadelphia.
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February 18, 2011 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - There is a Hall of Fame second baseman in camp with the Phillies, and Chase Utley is well aware of the man's presence. "I'd be dumb not to pick his brain," Utley said. So Utley and Ryne Sandberg will talk often, Utley promised. Outside observers would say there are plenty of similarities between the players. They hadn't met before this spring, but Sandberg's hiring as the franchise's triple-A manager created an opportunity. During spring training, Sandberg will work with the major-leaguers in camp before heading off to Allentown.
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March 17, 2013 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Staff Writer
TAMPA, Fla. - Concerns come and go in spring training. One day you're worried about Michael Young's defense at third base and the next your focus is on Roy Halladay's velocity and command. We'll get a better idea about Halladay's issues Sunday when he pitches against the Baltimore Orioles at Bright House Field. As for Young's defense, it's officially OK to stop worrying about it. Young, acquired in a trade from the Texas Rangers in December, had started just 64 games at third base the last two seasons and made 19 errors in his last full season at the position, 2010.
SPORTS
October 23, 2012
WHEN I WAS hired at this place, way back in 1992, the sports editor painted me a rosy picture. I could write features for a while, cover baseball for a while, and when the columnist nearing retirement age got there, why I could slip right into that spot if I showed the right stuff. I wound up earning the position, which is the way you want get a job anyway. Last month, I got a call from the local sportstalk station, WIP, which said it had lost its pooh-bah, or at least it thought it had, and would I like to try the gig. I said sure, what the hey, but after a few weeks someone asked (begged?
SPORTS
August 18, 2012 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Staff Writer
Ryne Sandberg is ready to return to the big leagues. "Oh, I'm ready," the Hall of Fame second baseman said last week as he sat in the dugout at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown. "In my mind, I'm ready for a major-league opportunity. " Good luck trying to find somebody who does not agree. Sandberg has spent six seasons as a minor-league manager, including the last two with the Phillies' triple-A Lehigh Valley affiliate, and the time has come for him to take the next step. You won't hear Sandberg say that.
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October 5, 2012 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Staff Writer
The first step toward Ryne Sandberg's becoming the next manager of the Philadelphia Phillies was put into motion Thursday when the Hall of Fame second baseman was named the team's third-base coach and infield instructor. General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. denied that was the intent after he recited the myriad changes to the coaching staff following the .500 season that ended the Phillies' run of five straight National League East titles. "We've made no promises to Ryne Sandberg," Amaro said.
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August 19, 2013 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
It's difficult to imagine that at the all-star break, the Phillies and Los Angeles Dodgers were on even footing. Now one team is gearing for October, and the other for next season. The differing paths continued with the Dodgers' 5-0 win Saturday night over the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, making interim manager Ryne Sandberg 0-2 and waiting for his team to score a run. The Phillies have been shut out 12 times this season. After games played on July 14, the Phillies entered the all-star break 48-48, and the Dodgers were 47-47.
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September 5, 2013 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Two Phillies pitchers fired eight straight balls with the bases loaded, and that represented the nadir of Tuesday night. A rookie wearing No. 67 relieved them in the next inning, committed a balk, and surrendered two more runs. This is what September baseball looks like for the pitching staff with the National League's worst ERA. Washington permitted four unearned runs to the Phillies and still won, 9-6, because the home team failed at the game's most basic task of throwing strikes.
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December 11, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
SAN DIEGO - A hint of nervousness creeps into Ryne Sandberg's voice whenever he talks about his team's starting pitching. That's because, at the moment, the Phillies do not have much in the way of it. As good as Cole Hamels has been over the last 5 years, 80 percent of the team's starts will need to be made by someone other than him. And that's assuming he isn't traded. The reports on Cliff Lee's balky left elbow have been optimistic, but reports are always optimistic this time of year.
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December 11, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
SAN DIEGO - A year ago, the Phillies arrived at the winter meetings with the news that Roy Halladay was retiring. Before leaving town, they signed Roberto Hernandez to replace him in the starting rotation. Other than the Rule 5 draft, it was the only roster activity during their 4-day stay in Orlando, Fla. Ruben Amaro Jr. arrived at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego this week ready to have a more active stay at the meetings, on the condition he could find another general manager ready to do business.
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October 17, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
LAST DECEMBER, 3 days after Roy Halladay announced his retirement, the Phillies signed veteran righthander Roberto Hernandez in an effort to fill the gap and solidify the bottom of their starting rotation. Two months later, not content with the final makeup of that rotation on the eve of the first official workout in Clearwater, the Phils signed another free-agent pitcher. A.J. Burnett joined the starting staff, effectively taking Halladay's place as the older, established righthander with playoff pedigree to plop between lefthanders Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee. The Phillies ended up paying just under $21 million for Hernandez and Burnett in 2014.
SPORTS
October 2, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
No Phillies coaches will lose their jobs as a result of a flawed roster's second straight 73-89 finish, the team announced Tuesday. But that does not mean Ryne Sandberg's staff will remain intact for 2015. All seven of the coaches were "asked to return" for next season, the Phillies said in a statement. That does not mean they all want to return. The coaches are free to seek employment elsewhere before renewing their contracts with the team. When he assembled his first staff, Sandberg said he wanted experience from his assistants.
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September 30, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
COLE HAMELS left Citizens Bank Park for the final time this season with a fat lip. He took a hard one-hopper off his face earlier in the day. "Sometimes," he said, "that happens. " It was the perfect souvenir from a season that was statistically the best of his career, but also forgettable since he had little to show for it when it all mercifully came to an end yesterday afternoon in South Philly. In the midst of retiring 20 straight Braves batters - and 24 of the final 25 he faced - Hamels took a comebacker off the bat of Tommy La Stella off his face to begin the second inning.
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September 29, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
There is $12.75 million reserved for A.J. Burnett, a 37-year-old whose career wages top $135 million, and all he must do is play one more season. That is the stipulation to the contract Burnett signed last February, when the Phillies believed he was the final piece to a contending team. Ryne Sandberg, when asked before a 4-2 loss to Atlanta Saturday night whether he knew anyone who would reject that sort of money, shrugged and smiled. But there was Burnett, motionless during the seventh inning after Justin Upton smashed a pivotal two-run homer, enduring another miserable moment that could force his retirement.
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September 27, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MIAMI - The 87th Phillies loss in 2014 resembled many before it, even though there was a certain significance to this particular one Thursday. The Phillies sealed a last-place finish for the first time since 2000. There will be countless growing pains for this franchise because no one can state with confidence that this is the nadir. David Buchanan could not pitch beyond the sixth inning in a 6-4 loss to the Marlins because Miami crushed him for nine hits. Everything fell apart in the seventh inning when Christian Yelich's routine grounder skipped through Cody Asche's legs.
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September 27, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MIAMI - There is no more difficult task for a coach than to break the old habits of entrenched players, and that is what the Phillies coaching staff faced in 2014. The Phillies will score more runs this season than last, but the difference is not much. And, barring a productive final weekend, the team's batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage will all decrease. First-year manager Ryne Sandberg assembled his first staff with experience in mind. He could not say Thursday who will return in 2015.
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September 26, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MIAMI - Jimmy Rollins pulled on his gray pants, donned a red Phillies long-sleeved shirt, and took his place at shortstop during batting practice Wednesday. He did not play for a 15th straight game, and his season is likely over because of a strained left hamstring. Rollins was asked whether risking a further injury in the final weekend was worth it. "Would it be wise?" he said. "It would not be wise. " In the end, prudence will prevail. The Phillies have no incentive to play Rollins.
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