On their official webpage, Phillies.com, the Phillies have announced, via video, that their equiptment truck is now on its way to Clearwater. It means that pitchers and catchers will soon be reporting for the start of Spring Training.
I can’t wait!!! GO PHILS!!!
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.
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.
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
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.
Welcome back, Ryne. Hope you’ll do well managing over in Lehigh Valley.
Samuel joins Phillies as third-base coach
By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com
Wait, I thought that he was going for Davey Lopes’ job???
PHILADELPHIA — The Phillies announced on Thursday they have hired Juan Samuel to be their third-base coach and outfield instructor.
Sam Perlozzo, who served as the team’s third-base coach the previous two seasons, will move from third to first base and handle the club’s baserunning instruction. The Phillies hired Samuel because Davey Lopes, who handled the team’s outfield and baserunning duties as first-base coach the previous four seasons, left the organization following a stalemate during contract negotiations.
Samuel and Perlozzo join pitching coach Rich Dubee, hitting coach Greg Gross, bench coach Pete Mackanin and bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer on the 2011 coaching staff.
“I feel fortunate that we were able to add someone of Juan’s stature to our coaching staff,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said in a statement. “He was a tremendous Major League player and a big part of Phillies history, and I’m looking forward to him passing on his knowledge of the game to our players. He’s a great addition to our organization.”
There were indications Samuel would return to Baltimore next season as its third-base coach, but the sides never finalized a deal, and the Phillies wooed him to Philadelphia.
Samuel, 49, was the Orioles’ third-base coach from 2007-10. He also served as interim manager this season after the Orioles dismissed Dave Trembley. Samuel also served as a first- and third-base coach with the Detroit Tigers (1999-2005).
Samuel, a three-time National League All-Star, played with the Phillies from 1983-89 and was inducted into the organization’s Wall of Fame in 2008. He hit .259 with 161 home runs, 703 RBIs and 396 stolen bases in 1,720 games for the Phillies, Mets, Dodgers, Royals, Reds, Tigers and Blue Jays.
He is the 34th man in franchise history to both play and coach for the Phillies.
Okay. Let me get this straight: Juan is joining the staff to replace Davey Lopes, but, he is going to be the team’s third-base, not first-base, coach, and will also work with the outfielders, while Sam Perlozzo will now become the team’s first-base coach and will be handling the baserunning duties?!? Anyone else besides me confused by this arrangement? Okay, guys, you better know what you’re doing since I think Juan should be the one handling the baserunning duties and vice versa. I’ll guess we’ll all see how it works out during the ’11 season.
With that said, welcome back, Juan.
Utley reinstated from disabled list.
Second baseman Chase Utley has been reinstated from the 15-day disabled list, Senior Vice President and General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. announced today. To make room for him on the 25-man roster, the Phillies designated infielder Greg Dobbs for assignment.
Utley, 31, was originally placed on the disabled list on June 29 and had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb on July 1 at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. He played in four rehab games with single-A Clearwater, three at second base and one at DH, going 3-for-12 with two triples, one RBI, one walk and one run
In 72 games this season, Utley is batting .277 with a .383 on-base percentage, 11 HR, 37 RBI and 49 runs scored. He also has an active 15-game on-base streak heading into Tuesday night’s game against San Francisco.
Dobbs, 32, hit .191 with four home runs and 14 RBI in 76 games this year for Philadelphia.
Welcome back Chase. We’d missed you. Hope you’re ready to contribute. Sorry to see you go, Greg, but, well, your bat just wasn’t there.
Sweeney brought aboard by Phillies
First baseman acquired from Seattle for player to be named later.
By Charlie Nobles / Special to MLB.com
MIAMI — First baseman Mike Sweeney was acquired by the Phillies from the Mariners on Wednesday for a player to be named later or cash considerations, vice president and general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. announced.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel expects Sweeney, 37, to get the bulk of playing time at first base until Ryan Howard, who was put on the disabled list Sunday, returns possibly in mid-August.
“I haven’t seen him in a couple of years, but he knows how to hit,” Manuel said.
The Phillies expect him to arrive on Thursday, before the final game of their three-game series with the Marlins at Sun Life Stadium.
Sweeney, a five-time American League All-Star, came into the season with a career .298 batting average over 16 seasons. He was batting .263 with six home runs and 18 RBIs over 30 games for the Mariners this season,
including three starts at first base.
Sweeney has hit at least 20 home runs in six seasons, including 29 in back-to-back seasons (2000-01).
“He’s always been able to hit the ball,” said Phillies outfielder Raul Ibanez, who has known Sweeney since they were on the same team in Class A.
“He has some power, too,” Ibanez added. “He’s played in some big parks, but he’s always hit the ball hard.”
Sweeney’s hitting pedigree combined with the fact he has made 570 career starts at first base prompted the Phillies to make the move.
According to Ibanez, they also are getting a special person.
“He’s a quality, upbeat human being,” Ibanez said. “He’s one of the nicest teammates I’ve ever had and one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. He brings positive energy everywhere he goes every single day.”
Ibanez said Sweeney will lead by example but “can pull somebody aside” for counsel. And he said he is capable of “getting in someone’s face” should it be necessary.
Originally selected by the Royals in the 10th round of the 1991 First-Year Player Draft, Sweeney had 213 home runs and 901 RBIs in 1,428 games for Kansas City (1995-2007), Oakland (2008) and Seattle (2009-10).
Notably, he has batted .328 in his career with runners in scoring position. And in 27 career games against National League East teams, he has hit .320.
Now the Phillies just hope to keep him healthy.
Sweeney has been on the disabled list twice this season with back inflammation/spasms. Most recently, he was on a rehab assignment with Triple-A Tacoma. In 12 games there, he hit .366 with two home runs and nine RBIs.
The Phillies must make a move on the 25-man roster to accommodate Sweeney when he reports.
Hmm, I get the feeling that John Mayberry, Jr. is going back to the minors, unless its someone else that might not be expected. Either way, I hope Sweeney is to be part of temp answer to first base while Howard is out, and will be helpful on the bench afterwards. We will see.
Oswalt approves deal to go to Phillies
By Brian McTaggart / MLB.com
HOUSTON — Roy Oswalt, one of the greatest pitchers to wear an Astros uniform, is headed to the Philadelphia Phillies.
Oswalt told the Astros on Thursday afternoon he would waive his no-trade clause in order to approve a trade to the two-time defending National League champions, a person close to the negotiations told MLB.com. The two sides were working the final details of the deal, which is expected to be announced today.
The Astros and Phillies reached a deal on Wednesday night to send Oswalt to the Phillies if the pitcher agreed to waive his no-trade clause. Left-handed pitcher J.A. Happ and Minor League outfielder Anthony Gose and shortstop Jonathan Villar are expected to come to the Astros, who are also expected to pay a portion of Oswalt’s contract.
When reached by MLB.com earlier Thursday afternoon, Oswalt said he hadn’t made a decision.
“No news yet,” he said.
Oswalt is owed about $5 million more this year and is due to make $16 million next season in the last year of his contract, but there’s a club option for 2012 that would pay him another $16 million.
The Astros had been fielding calls about Oswalt since he informed the team in May he wanted to be traded to a contender. Oswalt said Wednesday he would like to have some time to decide prior to Saturday’s 3 p.m. CT non-waiver Trade Deadline if he’d be willing to waive his no-trade clause to accommodate any deals the Astros put on the table.
Oswalt is 6-12 with a 3.42 ERA, but he has received some of the worst run support in the league. He has 143 wins and needed just one more victory to tie Joe Niekro for first place on the club’s all-time list.
The two-time defending National League champion Phillies are 54-46 and trail the Braves by 3 1/2 games in the NL East. By adding Oswalt, they bolstered a pitching staff, which boasts Roy Halladay, that’s ranked seventh in the NL with a 3.99 ERA.
Let see his stats: Played almost ten years for the Astros. Career record of 143-82 3.42 ERA, 303 Games Played, 291 Games Started, 19 Complete Games, 7 Shut Outs, 1932.1 Innings Pitched, 1593 Ks, 446 BBs, 1865 Hits, 747 Runs, 696 Earned Runs. Hmm, welcome to the team, Roy 2. Hope you do real well here.
Sorry to see you go, J.A. Happ. Wish you a lot of luck in Houston.
Okay, guys, time to charge after the Braves. Yeeeeee haaawwwwww!!!! Go Phils!!!