Philadelphia Phillies’ Coaching Staff Prepared for 2013 MLB Season
The Phillies' spring view is being shaped by fresh influences
Philadelphia Phillies' manager Charlie Manuel has recently indicated that he's not looking to take off his manager's cap after this season ends. Despite the fact that his contract is only guaranteed through the end of this season, Manuel still has the passion of the game in his blood.
General manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. hasn't extended Manuel's agreement, as he had in the past, because he naturally wants to see how this season plays out. Anything short of renewing his ticket to the “Fall Classic” would likely result in a change in the dugout.
Whether Ryne Sandberg becomes the Phillies next manager, or not, he will serve as a deep diamond resource this season. Beyond “Ryno's” Hall of Fame playing career credentials, we must never forget that he was willing to ride minor league buses across the country since 2007.
This former Phillies' farm-hand proves that high-achievers remain at the top because they aren't opposed to remaining humble throughout their enduring careers.
The additions of hitting coach Steve Henderson and assistant hitting coach Wally Joyner were two other smart staff moves that Amaro made in the off-season. Each man will bring a fresh voice to a bat rack that needs to be put in order.
Rod Nichols will lift more than half of the staff burden from the shoulders of Rich Dubee this year, as the team's new bullpen-only pitching coach.
The experience that Sandberg, Henderson and Nichols bring with them from their years with the Phillies' Triple-A Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs' will be invaluable this season. Those promotions were in order and appear to indicate the future direction of the major league coaching hierarchy.
Sandberg, Henderson, Joyner, Nichols and bullpen catcher Jesus Tiamo will serve as a fine compliment to the existing coaching staff that includes Manuel, Dubee, Juan Samuel and Mick Billmeyer.
The challenge that these nine men face this season won't be easy. There is enough talent on the major league roster and within the farm system to produce another playoff team, as long as the front office makes the right in-season moves.
Ryne Sandberg provides depth and future options
Ryne Sandberg will begin to fulfill his previously daunted Philadelphia Phillies' legacy this season.
Steve Henderson's task is to keep the bat rack in order
The offense could hum once again if hitting coach Steve Henderson is able to instill a disciplined mentality across the Philadelphia Phillies' lineup.
Wally Joyner needs to assist in sending a clear message
Wally Joyner's “Wally World” nickname belied the consistent approach that he carried to the plate during his 16-year major league career.
Along with Henderson, the Phillies new assistant hitting coach needs to help his students learn that hitting is a serious endeavor that can also be fun.
Rod Nichols has a balanced relief corps
Rod Nichols will operate under head pitching coach Rich Dubee. Amaro's decision to allow “Dubes” to focus on the starters, while Nichols interacts with the relievers was smart. Today's specialized baseball world requires additional skill sets.
Charlie Manuel has no intentions of leaving this team
Charlie Manuel may, or may not, be working in his final Philadelphia Phillies' season. With however his employment situation plays out, “Chuck” appears to have a deeper base of coaching colleagues surrounding him this year.
However, many career years and some good fortune will be need to be seen in order for his team to gain access to October's diamond dance.