Less than 48 hours ago, Charlie Manuel didn't sound like a man with a plan to overhaul his coaching staff.
"I’m comfortable with the coaches," Manuel said before Tuesday's game in Washington. "I’m definitely not sending them a message that they didn’t do their job. I’m just saying that, what I see, we’ve got to improve."
But less than 24 hours after the Philies season ended, the staff has been given a facelift, including adding a Hall of Famer to the bench.
Ryne Sandberg was named the Phillies third base coach and infield instructor on Thursday morning, a day after the season ended with the team dismissing three coaches: first base coach Sam Perlozzo, bench coach Pete Mackanin and hitting coach Greg Gross.
Sandberg has spent the last two seasons managing at Triple A Lehigh Valley. But after being interiewed for the St. Louis Cardinals manager's job last winter, the Phils obviously felt it was imperative to add Sandberg to the major league staff this year to keep him in the organization.
Other coaching moves announced Thursday:
- Juan Samuel, who has acted as the third base coach in the last two seasons, has been offered the first base coaching job, which has been vacated by Perlozzo.
- Steve Henderson and Rod Nichols have been promoted from within the organization to hitting coach and bullpen coach. Mick Billmeyer, who had been the bullpen coach, has been promoted to catching coach.
-The Phillies will not have a bench coach in 2013. But with pitching coach Rich Dubee back for his ninth season as pitching coach, and 12th in the Philies organization, he is Manuel's de facto right-hand man.
But the biggest news is Sandberg joining the staff. The 53-year-old had spent the last six seasons in the minor leagues, being groomed as a major league managing candidate.
He has been widely rumored to be the heir to Manuel, who is entering the final season of a three-year contract extension he signed in March of 2010.