Friday, August 22, 2014
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Phillies still mulling over minor-league staff

The Phillies’ big-league coaching staff is in place, but the promotions of Ryne Sandberg, Steve Henderson and Rod Nichols have left some holes to fill on the minor-league side.

Phillies still mulling over minor-league staff

“We were really happy and pleased with our development people overall," Ruben Amaro Jr. said. (Joseph Kaczmarek/AP)
“We were really happy and pleased with our development people overall," Ruben Amaro Jr. said. (Joseph Kaczmarek/AP)

The Phillies’ big-league coaching staff is in place, but the promotions of Ryne Sandberg, Steve Henderson and Rod Nichols have left some holes to fill on the minor-league side.

Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Monday that the team was still discussing how to configure the minor-league staff, but he indicated that most of the mainstays, including all the minor-league managers, would be returning in some capacity.

“All those guys did a really nice job,” Amaro said. “We were really happy and pleased with our development people overall. All those guys have certainly been told they will be back.”

If the Phillies opt to promote from within, the logical order of things would have Dusty Wathan moving up from his managerial role at double-A Reading to replace Sandberg as the manager at triple-A Lehigh Valley. That could open the spot at Reading for Chris Truby, who managed at high-A Clearwater last season. Truby' promotion would create a spot for former Phillies second baseman Mickey Morandini to move from low-A Lakewood to Clearwater.

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The Phillies were also pleased with the work Andy Tracy did in his first season as a minor-league manager with the team’s short-season Williamsport squad, which included prospects Roman Quinn, Larry Greene and Mitchell Walding. Tracy could end up at Lakewood, which would leave the Williamsport job open, possibly for an outside candidate.

Sal Rende, the hitting instructor at Lehigh Valley the last two seasons, could end up back in the role of hitting coordinator, which was vacated by Henderson. Rende was the minor-league hitting coordinator from 2008-10. Bob Milacki, the pitching coach at Reading the last three seasons, and Frank Cacciatore, the hitting instructor at Reading the last five seasons, could also be in line for promotions to Lehigh Valley.

Ruf still slugging

In other Phillies news, Darin Ruf has continued his torrid home run pace with Tiburones de La Guaira in the Venzeulan Winter League. Ruf went 2-for-3 with a home run Sunday and has four home runs and six RBIs in his last five games. He is hitting .276 overall (8-for-29) in eight games. He has been playing first base rather than left field.

Freddy Galvis, meanwhile, was third in hitting in the league, batting .425 (17-for-40) with three home runs and five RBIs for Aguilas del Zulia. Galvis has been playing shortstop.


Bob Brookover Inquirer Columnist
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