5 Reasons Why Philadelphia Phillies Should Fire Charlie Manuel
Philadelphia Phillies: 5 reasons why Charlie Manuel should be fired
The drill is a familiar one after every Philadelphia Phillies game these days.
The Phillies lose, usually badly, and manager Charlie Manuel gets up on the podium post-game and says, “We’ve got to play better baseball.” This happens every day, another loss, another “we’ve got to play better baseball” and nothing changes. The better baseball Manuel always talks about has become worse baseball.
To Philadelphia fans, the pattern is a familiar one, having been repeated after 12 of the Philadelphia Eagles’ 16 regular-season games last year. Instead of Manuel, the person at the post-game podium was Eagles’ head coach Andy Reid; and instead of “we’ve got to play better baseball”, it was Reid saying “I’ve got to do a better job.” At the end of last season, Eagles’ owner Jeffrey Lurie finally took Reid at his word and effectively said, “yes, Andy, you’ve got to do a better job, but you won’t get to do it here.”
Reid’s bosses heard that so much they got rid of that broken record. It’s time for the Phillies brass to do the same thing and fire Charlie Manuel. Of all days to pull the trigger, today would be a good one. Eight consecutive losses have been followed by one off day today before starting a Tuesday series against the San Francisco Giants. To be sure, this mess is not all Manuel's fault, but something has to be done to snap the team out of its current malaise. In between phone calls accepting trade offers, Phillies’ GM Ruben Amaro Jr. should make another to Manuel telling him he’s relieved of his duties. There are at least five good reasons why the Phillies should make this move:
5. He thinks 4 for 27 is "hitting good"
When asked to explain why career .186 hitter Michael Martinez was in the lineup on Saturday night, Manuel said “because he was hitting good at Lehigh Valley before he came up and I wanted to give him a shot.” Martinez’s last 27 at-bats before coming to Philadelphia resulted in just four hits.
4. Immediately improves the pitching staff
Manuel’s buddy Rich Dubee has been criticized by former Phillies pitchers for not knowing what he’s doing. Getting rid and Manuel and Dubee in one swoop might be doubly helpful.
3. Light a fire under the veterans
Veterans like Jimmy Rollins have grown comfortable with “Good Time Cholly” and often jog down to first base on ground balls without even the hint of discipline. Getting rid of their pal and protector would serve to shake things up and might light a fire under some of them.
2. He's way past retirement age anyway
Some questionable pitching substitutions and pinch-hitting moves have caused Phillies fans to scratch their heads all season and wonder what Charlie, who will be 70 in January, is thinking. Maybe it’s time for some younger blood.
1. Need to see what Ryne Sandberg can do
Third base coach Ryne Sandberg, who by all accounts did a good job at Triple-A Lehigh Valley (Pa.) the two seasons prior to this, is the manager-in-waiting. It would behoove the Phillies to see what Sandberg can do now before making a commitment to him next year. Maybe Sandberg can convince former Cubs’ teammate Jamie Moyer, who is respected by the current Phillies staff, to come on board as the pitching coach.