This is the courtesy thread for comments and discussion about the Phillies and other BASEBALL topics.
Last month, I broached the subject of replacing the manager with my cutesy “I have a solution” comments. Some agreed and others thought it was too early to make such a move ten games into the season. I countered with the point that it wasn’t a move after ten games but rather after two years and ten games. The following discussion covered the merits of a change, who would be a competent replacement, and would Dusty Wathan be a good option.
Well, here we are, three weeks later and I’m of the opinion that things have gotten worse. So, what was my solution? Honestly, it was just half of a solution, fire the manager. I hadn’t presumed to pick Dombrowski’s first choice to be HIS first manager for the team. I remember when I worked for a living, I was told never to point out a problem unless I had a suggestion for a solution. So, with that in mind, let’s look at what my whole solution should have been.
Once again, I’m not going to presume to tell Dombrowski what he should do. But, I will explore the options available.
First of all, unless there is a Dombrowski guy available for a multi-year contract, this is an interim position with a chance to win the job outright over the rest of the season. Are there any Dombrowski guys out there and available?
- 1988-1991: Buck Rodgers was Dombrowski’s first manager for the Montreal Expos. DD inherited Rodgers from Bill Stoneman’s regime and left him in place for over 3 seasons before finally firing him 49 games into the 1991 season. Tom Runnells was DD’s hand-picked replacement with success managing in the minors. He took over as interim manager. DD left the Expos after the 1991 season. Runnells was not a popular manager among his players or media, was fired 37 games into the 1992 season, and was replaced with Felipe Alou by Dan Duquette. Rodgers is 83-years-old.
- 1992-2001: DD went through five managers during his tenure with the Florida Marlins. He chose Rene Lachemann as the first-ever manager of the Marlins based on his success as a coach with the Athletics. He was fired in 1996. Lachemann is 77 and out of baseball since 2016.
- Cookie Rojas was interim manager for one game.
- John Boles, a front-office executive, finished the season. DD described the firing of Lachemann as an “extremely difficult decision to make at this time,” citing the team’s play as the reason for the change.
- After his success with the Pirates, Jim Leyland was hired by Wayne Huizenga to manage the Marlins. He led the team to their 1997 World Series victory over Cleveland. He resigned from the Marlins with three years remaining on his contract after Huizenga sold off all the championship players and the team fell to 54-108 in 1998.
- John Boles had been hired in 1989 as DD’s vice president/player development for the Expos. When DD went to the Marlins, Boles went with him in the same capacity. He still held that position when he was named the interim manager in 1996. But, was replaced by Leyland when Huzienga wanted a high-profile manager in 1997. Boles returned as manager after Leyland resigned until he was fired during the 2001 season. He joined the Royals in 2012 as a senior advisor to the GM. He is 73-years-old.
- Tony Perez was selected as the interim manager for the remainder of the 2001 season.
- 2002-2015: DD let incumbent Phil Garner get off to a 0-6 start with Detroit before firing him and bringing in Alan Trammell for three sub-.500 seasons. He took a special assistant to the GM position with the Tigers and DD and is still there today. Trammell is 64-years-old.
- In 2006, DD hired Jim Leyland managed until 2013. Leyland was very successful winning three division titles and making the playoffs four times and the World Series twice. He retired from managing after the 2013 season remaining with the Tigers as a special assistant. He is 77-years-old.
- Brad Ausmus was hired for the 2014 season and made the postseason in the first of his four years as manager. He was retained after DD went to Boston. He is currently the bench coach with the Athletics. He is 53-years-old.
- 2015-2019: John Farrell was the incumbent when DD went to Boston. He finished first in the division but lost in the division round of the playoffs in 2016 and 2017. He was not rehired when his contract expired after the 2017 season. In 2018, he joined the Cincinnati organization as a scout “evaluating the club’s system and also serving on special assignments”. Farrell is 59-years-old.
- Alex Cora was hired in 2018 by the Red Sox and won the World Series. He stepped down in 2020 when he was accused of cheating with the cheatin’ Houston Astros as their bench coach. He was rehired in 2021 and is still with them.
Jim Leyland, the former DD manager mentioned most often, is 77-years-old. But, Tony LaRussa is managing the White Sox and is 77-years-old.
So, are there any internal options for an interim assignment? Do we have a Dallas Green or Paul Owens?
- Could Sam Fuld take an interim position? Depending on how “too late” the move is made, he could learn what is lacking in the clubhouse first-hand. Like the oxygen someone mentioned recently. The first-hand experience might benefit him.
- Larry Bowa and Charlie Manuel have the required experience to take over the position and should have the cache to walk into the clubhouse. But, maybe they’re too old to take on the job?
- How about Ruben Amaro? He has faults, but he could identify problems. He can’t fix them, but at least he would be out of the broadcast booth. (Listening to him on broadcasts, he comes across as too “old school”. That won’t work after they removed all the hard-line “old school” guys during the off-season.)
- Jorge Velandia was a finalist in each of the last three manager searches. It’s only interim. he might be the guy to find the flaws.
- Pat Gillick. He would definitely have the cache to walk into that clubhouse. But why would he at his age.
- Why not someone from the current staff? Rob Thomson maybe.
- Or, Dusty Wathan? This possibility was discussed. It’s only interim.
- Or, Bobby Dickerson? Hmm.
- Or, Bobby Meacham? Hmm, too.
- Or guys from elsewhere in our minors. Like Kevin Bradshaw, Manny Amador, Anthony Contreras (I don’t really think so), Shawn Williams (I like this option), Marty Malloy, Roly de Armas (I wonder if he would accept), Rafael DeLima
- Other names from the org might include Mike Schmidt (nah), Preston Mattingly (nope), Howie Kendrick (interesting), Milt Thompson
Like I said several times, it’s only interim. If it happens, the manager is probably going to come from within. One of these guys might be the solution. Long term, I like Shawn Williams. He doesn’t take sh*t from players. But, as an interim solution, I kinda like Fuld on a short assignment. Or Velandia. As long as the choice can return to his position after assessing the team.
As should be expected in all things MLB, some teams are placing players on a 10-day IL, and others are placing players on a 15-day IL. Leave it to MLB to screw up another thing.
- July 15-19, 2022: All-Star Week in Los Angeles
- July 17-19, 2022: MLB Draft
- August 2, 2022: Trade Deadline (6 p.m. ET)
- October 5, 2022: Final scheduled day of the regular season
5/08/2022 – Phillies placed RHP Zach Eflin on the 10-day IL
5/08/2022 – Phillies recalled RHP Connor Brogdon from Lehigh Valley
5/08/2022 – Phillies recalled LHP Cristopher Sanchez from Lehigh Valley
5/08/2022 – Phillies recalled RHP Francisco Morales from Reading
5/08/2022 – Reading activated CF Simon Muzziotti from the 7-day IL
5/08/2022 – Clearwater placed RHP Gunner Mayer on the 7-day IL retroactive to 5/7
5/08/2022 – SS Erick Brito assigned to Clearwater from DSL White
5/08/2022 – SS Uziel Viloria assigned to Clearwater from FCL Phillies
5/07/2022 – Phillies placed SS Didi Gregorius on the 10-day IL retroactive to 5/5, left knee sprain
5/07/2022 – Phillies recalled SS Bryson Stott from Lehigh Valley
5/06/2022 – Reading placed SS Madison Stokes on the 7-day IL retroactive to 5/5
5/06/2022 – Reading placed 2B Wendell Rijo on the 7-day IL retroactive to 5/5
5/06/2022 – CF Chris Sharpe assigned to Reading
5/06/2022 – RF Felix Reyes assigned to FCL Phillies from Clearwater
5/06/2022 – LHP Jordan Fowler assigned to FCL Phillies from Clearwater
5/06/2022 – RHP Eiberson Castellano assigned to Clearwater from DSL White
5/06/2022 – SS Freylin Minyety assigned to Reading from Clearwater
5/06/2022 – C Herbert Iser assigned to Clearwater from FCL Phillies
5/06/2022 – FCL Phillies released RHP Jonas De La Cruz
5/05/2022 – Phillies signed free agent CF Chris Sharpe to a minor league contract
5/05/2022 – RHP Andrew Brown assigned to Clearwater from FCL Phillies
5/05/2022 – Jersey Shore transferred RHP Victor Vargas to the Development List
5/05/2022 – Jersey Shore activated RHP Cristian Hernandez
5/04/2022 – Lehigh Valley activated SS Dalton Guthrie from the 7-day IL
5/04/2022 – RHP Carlos Betancourt assigned to Clearwater from FCL Phillies
5/03/2022 – Lehigh Valley placed RHP Jake Newberry on the 7-day IL
5/03/2022 – Clearwater placed RHP Victor Lopez on the 7-day IL retroactive to 5/1
5/02/2022 – Phillies optioned Cristopher Sanchez to Lehigh Valley
5/02/2022 – Phillies optioned Damon Jones to Lehigh Valley
5/02/2022 – Lehigh Valley placed LHP Zach Warren on the 7-day IL
5/02/2022 – Reading transferred RHP Julian Garcia to the Development List
5/02/2022 – Reading transferred 3B Matt Kroon from the 7-day IL to the 60-day IL
5/02/2022 – Clearwater placed RHP Buddy Hayward on the 7-day IL