Tagged: Manager

2014 Philadelphia Phillies (for the moment)

Philadelphia_PhilliesRyne Sandberg – Manager

Larry Bowa – Bench Coach

Steve Henderson – Hitting Coach

John Mizerock – Assistant Hitting Coach

Bob McClure – Pitching Coach

Juan Samuel – First Base Coach

Pete Mackanin – Third Base Coach

Rod Nichols – Bullpen Coach

Jesus Tiamo – Bullpen Catcher

Cliff Lee, A.J. Burnett, Kyle Kendrick, Roberto Hernandez (Cole Hamels (late April)) – Starters

Justin De Fratus, B.J. Rosenberg, Jake Diekman, Mario Hollands, Brad Lincoln, Jeff Manship, Antonio Bastardo, Jonathan Papelbon (Closer) – Bullpen

Carlos Ruiz, Wil Nieves (Backup) – Catchers

Ryan Howard (1st), Chase Utley (2nd), Cody Asche (3rd), Jimmy Rollins (Shortstop), Cesar Hernandez (Utility), Jayson Nix (Utility) – Infielders

Dom Brown (Left Field), Ben Revere (Center Field), Marlon Byrd (Right Field), John Mayberry, Jr. (Utility), Tony Gwynn, Jr. (Utility) – Outfielders

Moves the Phils have made during the past off-season…

Philadelphia_PhilliesAs the Phils’ 2013 season wounded down, with the club wounding up in fourth place in the five-team NL East with a 73-89, .451 record, 23 games behind the first-place Atlanta Braves, the Phils first post-season move was to make interim manager, Hall of Famer Ryan Sandberg, the team’s 52nd manager, by signing him to a three-year contract on September 22, 2013. The Phils’ next move was to announce on September 30 that Rich Dubee was not returning as the team’s pitching coach, ending a nine season relationship with the Phils, as the team started to look for a new pitching coach. On that same day, they announced that they were promoting from the team’s Minor League system, Paul Fournier, as the team’s new strength and conditioning coach, replacing Doug Lien, who had held that position for the previous six seasons, as the club hopes to improve the team’s overall health.

The Phils next move was to make a shake-up in their 40 men roster as they outrighted infielders Michael Martinez and Pete Orr, right-handed pitcher Zach Miner and lefthander Mauricio Robles on October 3, while, on that same day, the Indians picked up right-hander Tyler Cloyd off of the waiver-wire, while the Astros picked up leftie Raul Valdes, opening up six spots on the roster.

Two days later, on October 5, the Phils announced that they would not be renewing the contract of bullpen catcher, Mick Billmeyer, who had been with the club since 2004, first as the catching instructor, then as the bullpen coach in 2009, before becoming the bullpen catcher in 2012. The next Phils move came from out of the blue as, on October 8, former Phils’ player and one time Phils’ manager, and fan favorite, Larry Bowa, rejoined the team as the new bench coach, while another ex-Phil, Pete Mackanin, would join the team as the new third base coach. The Phils also announced that Steve Henderson would remain as the team’s hitting coach while Wally Joyner would leave as the team’s assistant hitting coach, later being hired by the Detroit Tigers as their new hitting coach, while John Mizerock would later become the new assistant hitting coach and Jesus Tiamo would become the new catcher coach, as Juan Samuel would stay on as the team’s first base coach, while Rod Nichols would remain the bullpen coach.

The next move occurred on October 17 as John Lannan decided to become a free agent after he had been outrighted by the club, after refusing assignment.

Then on November 5, the Phils announced that they were hiring Scott Freedman to help the ballclub better understand the use of analytics in the evaluation of players. Seven days later, on November 12, the Phils announced their first free agent signing, as they signed right fielder Marlon Byrd to a two-year contract worth $16 million dollars. Byrd, who is a right-handed batter, and an ex-Phil, has played in the majors from 2002, having played for the Phils (2002-05), the Nats (2005-06), the Rangers (2007-09), the Cubs (2010-12), the Red Sox (2012), the Mets (2013) and the Pirates (2013), appearing in 1250 games, hitting .280 (1222 for 4367), knocking in 533 RBIs as he scored 600 times. Among his 1222 hits were 252 doubles, 32 triples and 106 HRs, while he has also walked 307 times. The Phils plan to use him in the line-up behind Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, the later of whom the team hopes will bounce back from several injuries plagued seasons and regain his form as the team’s RBI and home runs leader. The Phils next announced on November 15 that they have given four players minor league contracts with invites to spring training: right-hander Shawn Camp, left-hander Cesar Jimenez and outfielders Clete Thomas and Leandro Castro.

The Phils then announced on November 18 that they have resigned present catcher Carlos Ruiz to a three-year deal worth $26 million dollars with a team option of $4.5 million or a $500,000 buyout for 2017. The next day, the team announced that they have signed a minor league contract, with a spring training invitation, to infielder Reid Brignac, who would be competing for a utility infielder position with Kevin Frandsen and Freddy Galvis. On November 20, the Phils announced that they were adding four minor league prospects to their 40-man roster to keep them from being picked up by other teams in December’s 5-Rule draft: outfielders Aaron Altherr and Kelly Dugan, catcher Tommy Joseph and left-hander Rob Rasmussen.

The following day, November 22, the Phils signed Bob McClure as their new pitching coach, replacing Dubee. On that same day, they announced that they have signed infielder Andres Blanco to a minor league contract, with an invite to spring training.

On December 4, the Phils made a trade with the Blue Jays, receiving right-handed pitcher Brad Lincoln in exchange for catcher Erik Kratz and minor league pitcher Rasmussen. Lincoln, who has pitched for the Pirates and the Blue Jays (2010-13) has appeared in 97 games, 22 of which was as a starter, for a record of 9-11 with a 4.66 ERA. With one career save in two attempts, he has pitched in 220 games, giving up 228 hits, 123 runs, 114 of which were earned, as he struck out 167 batters while walking only 77. The Phils will likely use him in the bullpen. After the trade, the ballclub would sign catcher Wil Nieves to a one-year deal on December 5, as the team’s back-up catcher. Nieves, who has played for the Padres (2002), the Yankees (2005-2007), the Nats (2008-10), the Brewers (2011), the Diamondbacks (2012), the Rockies (2012-13) and the Diamondbacks again (2013), has appeared in 385 games, hitting .242 (249 for 1029), with 46 doubles, 2 triples and 8 home runs, as he knocked in 103 RBIs while scoring 78 times. He has also walked 59 times. On that same day, the Phils signed right-handed pitcher Jeff Manship to a minor league contract with a spring training invitation.

Then, on December 9, Roy Halladay announced his retirement from baseball, ending a 16-year career with the Blue Jays and the Phils, as he didn’t think he would be able to pitch after his most recent arm injury. Halladay, who said that he had signed a one-day contract with the Blue Jays to end his career as a Jay, and had paid a full page ad in the Philly newspaper thanking the Phils fans for their support during his time as a Phils (2010-13), had appeared in 416 career games, 390 as a starter, with a career record of 203-105, with a 3.38 ERA and a career save, had completed 67 games, 20 for shutouts, as he pitched in 2749.1 total innings, striking out 2117 batters as he walked only 592, as he gave up 2646 hits and 1135 runs, only 1034 of which were earned. He also threw a perfect game and a no-hitter in the post-season, both of which occurred during his first season as a Phil (2010). Thanks for being a member of the Phils, Roy, and being a class act, and wish you luck getting into the Hall.

On December 12, through the Rule 5-draft, the Phils would acquire right-hander Kevin Munson from the Diamondbacks’ Reno club, while they would lose right-hander Seth Rosin to the Mets, who would then trade him to the Dodgers for cash in the major league portion of the draft, and shortstop Jonathan Roof to the Red Sox in the Triple-A part of it, both from their Reading affiliate.

Next, on December 18, the Phils signed a one-year deal with right-hander Roberto Hernandez for $4.5 million dollars, plus performance and award bonuses. Hernandez, who has previous pitched for the Indians (2006-12) and the Blue Jays (2013), has appeared in 216 games, 177 as a starter, with a 59-82 record, with a 4.67 ERA. He will be part of the Phils’ starting rotation, along with Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Kyle Kendrick and Jonathan Pettibone.

In January, the Phils made a new TV-deal with Comcast for 25-year, which included broadcasters Chris Wheeler and Gary Matthews not returning to the broadcast booth. On the 14, the Phils had four players file for salary arbitration: outfielders Ben Revere and John Mayberry, Jr. and pitchers Antonio Bastardo and Kendrick. The next day, January 15, the Phils announce that former manger Charlie Manuel would be returning to the team as a consultant to general manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. On the 17, the Phils announced that two of the four arbitration eligible players have signed one-year deals: Mayberry, who had agreed to a 1.587 million dollar deal, while Kendrick had agreed to one worth 7.675 million. The Phils then signed two minor league deals on the 21, one to veteran right-hander Chad Gaudin, and one to former Phil and veteran outfielder Bobby Abreu, with both being given spring training invites. On that same day, the Phils and Bastardo agreed to a one-year contract worth $2 million dollars. Three days later, on the 24, Ben Revere signed a one-year deal with the Phils for $ 1.95 million dollar.

With that, the last bit of news is that the Phils might be replacing Wheeler and Matthews with former Phils Matt Stairs and Jamie Moyer, both of whom have impressed the Phils in their separate interviews to join the broadcast team, and that finally, yesterday, the equipment truck has started heading south for the spring training facilities in Clearwater, Florida from Citizens Bank Park in Philly. It is now six more days before catchers and pitchers are suppose to appear in Clearwater.

Can’t wait for Spring Training to officially start. 🙂

The Phils have just announced that ex-Phil Mickey Morandini will manage their Class-A team.

Ex-Phil Morandini to manage Class A affiliate

By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com

Looks like the team has gotten their man again. Welcome back to the red pinstripes, Mick. Hope you’ll do well running the team in Williamsport.

PHILADELPHIA — Mickey Morandini is back with the Phillies.

He told The Northwest Indiana Times on Thursday he will be the Class A Williamsport manager next season. Morandini had talked during Spring  Training in Clearwater, Fla., about coaching professionally in the near future.

Morandini — fans still can hear Harry Kalas drawing out the second baseman’s name during broadcasts — had been the baseball coach at Valparaiso High School in Indiana.

“I’m gonna miss it. I had fun. I really enjoyed working with the kids,” Morandini told the newspaper. “But this is an opportunity to do some good things at the professional level, and it’s something I couldn’t pass up. I’m excited about it. I know the owner and GM very well. It’s a great family-owned organization that’s always taken care of its past players. Its Minor League system is very well-run. I’m excited to be a part of it again.”

Morandini said the Phillies had contacted him about coaching every year since he retired from playing in 2000. “I love to manage,” Morandini said. “I love all the little things that go into teaching kids. Hopefully, I can work my way up through the system kind of like ‘Ryno’ [Ryne Sandberg] and get back to the big leagues some day.”

Morandini played 11 seasons in the big leagues, including nine seasons (1990-97 and 2000) with Philadelphia. He made the National League All-Star team in 1995, and hit .268 in his career with the Phillies, Cubs and Blue Jays.

H/T Phillies.com

Samuel? Check! Sandberg? Check! Morandini? Check! Three fan favorites back in the fold. Here’s to wishing them well in their new positions in the organization, and hoping that the Phils’ management (I’m looking at you, junior) will be doing something this late fall/winter that will help the main ball club.

The Phils have signed Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg as their new manager at Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Sandberg to manage Phils’ Triple-A club

Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs tab Hall of Fame second baseman

By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com

Hmm, first Juan, and now Ryne. So far so good, especially with
reports of them trying to sign up fan favorite Mickey Morandini as
well.

PHILADELPHIA — Nearly 29 years after the Phillies traded Ryne Sandberg to the Chicago Cubs, he is rejoining the organization.

The Phillies announced on Monday morning that they’ve hired Sandberg
as the manager for their Triple-A affiliate, the Lehigh Valley Iron
Pigs. Sandberg managed the previous four seasons in the Cubs’ Minor
League system, including last season with Triple-A Iowa. He had been a
candidate to become the Cubs’ manager following Lou Piniella’s
midseason retirement, but Chicago retained Mike Quade instead.
Sandberg, a Hall of Fame second baseman and Cubs icon, subsequently
informed the Cubs he would seek employment elsewhere.

The Phillies had an opening and landed Sandberg.

Dallas Green said last week that Sandberg would make a great manager.

Green has a storied history with Sandberg. Green was the Cubs’
general manager when he fleeced the Phillies in one of the worst trades
in franchise history. The Jan. 27, 1982, deal sent Larry Bowa and
Sandberg to the Cubs for Ivan DeJesus. The Phillies felt they did not
have a position to play Sandberg, and because they felt compelled to
trade Bowa following a bitter contract dispute, Green astutely demanded
the Phillies include Sandberg in the trade.

Sandberg invited Green to his Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2005.

“I would think he would make a great fit for us,” Green said last
week. “We raised him. He’s been let down by Chicago a good bit. He’s a
little bit bitter about that. … When he didn’t get the job, I called
him and commiserated with him. I knew he was disappointed. I still
personally think he should be a big league guy if that’s what he really
wants to do.

“I love the guy. He’s got a great work ethic. I haven’t watched him, but I think he’s going to be a good teacher.”

Sandberg earned Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year honors this
past season, when he led the Iowa Cubs (82-62) to a tie for the best
record in the Northern Division.

Sandberg was a 10-time National League All-Star. He also won nine
Gold Glove Awards and seven Silver Slugger Awards during his 16-year
career. The Phillies drafted Sandberg in 1978, and he played 13 games
for the club in ’81 before being traded.

The Phillies said the remainder of their 2011 player development
staff will be announced at a later date, but Mickey Morandini is
expected to be named to the staff in some capacity.

H/T Phillies.com

Welcome back, Ryne. Hope you’ll do well managing over in Lehigh Valley.

Phils leave St. Louis with an extra-inning win as they defeat the Cards, 2-0.

The Phils leave St. Louis salvaging an extra-inning win as they defeat the Cards in a pitchers’ duel, 2-0.

The game from the start was a classic pitchers’ duel between Phils’ starter Cole Hamels, who pitched eight scoreless inning, giving up only a lead-off single to Matt Holliday in the fifth, before he is wiped out by an 8-3 fly out-double play to center by Allen Craig and a two out walk to Yadier Molina in the eighth, while striking out seven, and Cards’ starter Adam Wainwright, who pitched six shut out innings, giving up six scattered hits, while he struck out six. The bullpens then took over, with the Cards’ pen keeping the Phils off the scoreboard for four more innings, as they give up just three hits, while striking out three, and the Phils’ pen, which threw two more shut out innings, giving up no hits, while striking out two. The Phils then took the lead in the eleventh as Placido Polanco hits a lead-off home run, his sixth home run of the year, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. Four batters later, with two men on, and with one out, Jayson Werth hits an RBI double, scoring Raul Ibanez, who had earlier walked, then moved up to second base on Ryan Howard’s single, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead, while sending Howard, who had just singled, on to third. That would end up being the final score as Brad Lidge came in to nail down his eighth save of the season as he pitched a scoreless inning.

Cole Hamels receives a no-decision as he pitches eight shut out innings, as he gives up just one hit and one walk, while striking out seven. Ryan Madson and J.C. Romero combine for one and one-third scoreless innings, striking out a batter (Madson). Chad Durbin picks up the win as he pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up no runs or hits, while striking out a batter. His record is now 2-1 with a 3.23 ERA. Brad Lidge receives his eighth save of the year as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up just a walk. Adam Wainwright also receives a no-decision, as he pitches six scoreless innings, giving up six hits, while striking out six. Mitchell Boggs, Dennys Reyes and Jason Motte combine for four scoreless inning (with Reyes facing only one batter), giving up three hits (Boggs (2), Reyes (1)), while striking out three (Boggs (1), Motte (2)) between them. Kyle McClellan took the lost as he pitches a third of an inning, giving up a run on one hit. His record is now 1-3 with a 2.06 ERA. Trever Miller pitch to two batter, getting neither one out, as he gives up a run on a hit and a walk. Fernando Salas pitches two-thirds of an inning, giving up a hit and a walk.

The Phils had twelve hits in the game, with Placido Polanco and Ryan Howard both leading the team with three hits each. Polanco’s hits were two singles and a solo home run, while Howard’s three hits were all singles. Brian Schneider follows with two hits, a single and a double. Shane Victorino, Raul Ibanez, Jayson Werth and Jimmy Rollins had the other four Phils’ hits, with Ibanez and Rollins’ hits being singles, and Victorino and Werth’s hits being doubles, with Werth knocking in a run. The Phils are still unable to put together some decent rallies, since they are continuing to press themselves while batting, instead of trying to relax. This has resulted in the firing of hitting coach Milt Thompson, who had held that position since 2004. He is being replaced by Greg Gross, who held that same position from 2002 to 2004, when Larry Bowa was the manager. Sorry to see you go Milt. Good luck. And, Greg, hope you have some ideas that’ll get this offense moving in the right direction, as you are so going to need them.

The Phils (49-46, 2nd NL East) come home to start a four-game series with the Rockies (51-44, 3rd NL West) with a night game tonight. The Phils will send to the mound their ace Roy Halladay (10-8, 2.40), who is coming off a lost against the Cubs on July 18, as he went six innings, giving up six runs, five of which were earned, on seven hits, while striking out three, in the Phils’ 11-6 lost. In his last three starts, his record is 1-1 with a no-decision, as he had pitched twenty-four innings, giving up seven runs, six of which were earned, on seventeen hits and two walks, while striking out nineteen. He will be once again gunning for his eleventh win of the season, while hoping that the offense will actually give him some runs support. The Rockies will counter with Aaron Cook (4-5, 4.56), who is coming off a win against the Reds on July 18, as he went seven shut out innings, giving up just six hits and a walk, while striking out five, in the Rockies’ 1-0 win. In his last three starts, his record is 2-0 with a no-decision, as he pitched eighteen and one-third innings, giving up eight runs on twenty-three hits and three walks, while striking out ten. He will be trying to even his record at the Phils’ expense. The Phils will hope to get their offense started once again, after the firing of Milt Thompson because of their present inability to do anything right, batting wise.

The Hall of Fame has come calling and…

Has just announced that they have elected Andre Dawson with 77.9 of the votes or 420 of the 539 ballots. Dawson, who spent 21 seasons (1976-1996) in the majors playing mainly both center and right field with the Montreal Expos (now the Washington Nationals), the Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox and Florida Marlins, batted .279 while amassing 2774 hits, 438 home runs and 1591 rbis, was an eight time all-star (1981-83, 1987-91), won the gold glove eight times (1980-85, 1987-8), won the silver slugger award four times (1980-81, 1983, 1987), won the National League MVP in 1987 and the NL Rookie of the Year Award in 1977. Dawson will be inducted into the Hall on July 25, along with manager Whitey Herzog and umpire Doug Harvey, who were both elected last month by the Veterans Committee.

Congratulations on finally getting into the Hall, Andre.

Former Phillies’ manager Danny Ozark passed away today, age 85.

The Phillies had a few hours ago announced the passing of former Phillies’ manager, Danny Ozark.

According to a press release:

Danny Ozark, who ranked third for most wins among Phillies managers, died this morning at his home in Vero Beach, Fla. He was 85 years of age.

Mr. Ozark was named the Phillies manager on November 1, 1972. In his first five years, the Phillies won 71, 80, 86, 101 and 101 games. They won three consecutive National League Eastern Division titles starting in 1976, a record unmatched by any other Phillies manager. Each year, however, the Phillies missed on advancing to the World Series.

Mr. Ozark finished with a 594-510 record as Phillies manager (1973-79). His winning percentage of .538 is seventh-best in team history. He was named Manager of the Year in 1976 by the Associated Press and The Sporting News.

“Ginny and I really miss Philadelphia,” Mr. Ozark said in a Phillies Magazine story published last month. “We enjoyed our time there. That city is a great sports town. The fans are the greatest. They do express themselves, but that’s OK. We made a lot of lifelong friends there.”

Mr. Ozark began his pro career as a first baseman in the Brooklyn Dodgers system in 1942. Following a minor league career, he turned to managing in 1956, with the Dodgers’ Class B team in Wichita Falls.

Nine years later Mr. Ozark joined the Los Angeles Dodgers as a coach. After leaving the Phillies, he returned to the Dodgers as a coach (1980-82). His career ended with the San Francisco Giants as a coach (1983-84) and their interim manager in 1984 (24-32).

Born Daniel Leonard Orzechowski on November 24, 1923, in Buffalo, N.Y., he married Ginny Zdinski. The couple celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in February.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Ozark is survived by two children, Dwain and Darlene; three granddaughters; and four great-grandchildren. His hobbies included golf and following the Phillies. He was an active golfer in charity events conducted by the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association.

Funeral arrangements are pending. (H/T Phillies.com)

And another ex-Phil goes to that red pinstriped heaven in the sky. My condolences to Danny’s family. And thanks, Danny, for helping make the Phils into a contender instead of the laughing stock of baseball back in the mid-70s.