Hall of Fame second baseman Ryne Sandberg has been hired as manager of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, the Phillies’ triple-A affiliate in the International League, Chuck LaMar, Assistant General Manager, Player Development & Scouting, announced today.
Sandberg, 51, spent the last four seasons as a manager in the Chicago Cubs’ minor league system with single-A Peoria (2007-08), double-A Tennessee (2009) and triple-A Iowa (2010). He led his clubs to two first-place finishes and, overall, has a managerial record of 284-277-1 (.505). This past season, his first as a triple-A manager, Sandberg was named Manager of the Year in the Pacific Coast League after leading the Iowa Cubs to a tie for the best record in the Northern Division (82-62).
A 2005 inductee to Major League Baseball’s Hall of Fame, Sandberg was a 10-time National League All-Star and won nine Gold Gloves and seven Silver Slugger awards during his 16-year career (1981-94, 1996-97). He was originally drafted by the Phillies in 1978 and made his major league debut with the club in 1981, appearing in 13 games. Sandberg finished his career with a .285 batting average, 282 home runs, 1,061 RBI and 344 stolen bases in 2,164 games. At the time of his retirement, his 277 home runs as a second baseman was a major league record.
The remainder of the Phillies’ 2011 player development staff will be announced at a later date.
Our minor league contributor Jay Floyd, wrote about the possibility of the Sandberg hiring last week. Check out what he had to say.