The Phillies announced today that they’ve promoted Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs manager Ryne Sandberg to third base coach and infield instructor. This comes after the firings of Sam Perlozzo, Pete Mackanin, and Greg Gross on Wednesday.
Other moves with the coaching staff were also made. Steve Henderson was promoted from AAA to be the new hitting coach for the Phillies and Rod Nichols is now in charge of the bullpen.
Rich Dubee will be retained as pitching coach, while Mick Billmeyer has been promoted to catching coach. Not sure how that is a promotion or what that changes for Billmeyer, but we’ll find out.
That leaves Juan Samuel, who was offered the position of first base coach and outfield/baserunning instructor. It appears he has not made up his mind on whether to stay with the Phillies in that capacity. The Phillies will not employ a bench coach.
Obviously, the big news is that the Hall of Famer Sandberg finally gets his shot at coaching in the big leagues. This is looking like the Charlie Manuel farewell tour as many of the faces you’ve come to know are gone.
The thought is that Sandberg could be the next Phillies manager after Manuel’s contract expires following the 2013 season. Is that the right move? Our own Eric Seidman addressed that situation.
Clearly, the Phillies were unhappy with being stagnant. Ruben Amaro and co. changed the direction of the organization with one fell swoop. We’re beginning to see the changing of the guard, with Sandberg at the forefront.