Charlie Manuel will finish his career in Philadelphia as the winning-est coach in Phillies history. Whether his star-studded roster was the reason for his success will be for you, the fan, to decide.
The Phillies went from the best team in baseball to a team 17.5 games back of the first-place Washington Nationals in less than a year.
The team has also regressed every single season since they won the World Series in 2008. The more money the Phillies spent, the shorter Charlie led the Phillies into the postseason.
Ruben Amaro Jr. has had a lot to do with the team's dismal 2012 season, but any development at the major league level has simply not happened in 2012. Players are not improving and continue to make the same mistakes over and over again. That lays on the manager and his staff.
The only life in this team comes from players who were in Triple-A affiliate Lehigh Valley at the start of the 2012 season, aside from Carlos Ruiz's stellar year. The clubhouse is slipping away from Charlie at a rapid pace.
Charlie has done such a poor job with the 2012 Phillies, the home sellout streak was lost. With the fans leaving, so does the money. Fans need to be shown the Phillies' organization is dedicated to winning. Without the fans, the Phillies will lose the money to sign free agents and soon return to mediocrity.
Charlie has nothing left to accomplish in Philadelphia, and leaving him as the head coach for the Phillies in 2013 for good graces will only deter this team from making progress. A manager needs to be a leader, a man who makes tough choices not always to popular demand.
Manuel is not that man, never has been, never will be. He lets things play out in order to earn the respect of his players instead of making educated, precise decisions that lead to improving a ball club.
Instead, Charlie leaves his veteran players in roles they can no longer manage and refuses to give young players a chance unless he is forced to by trades or injuries. Jimmy Rollins is batting .243 and his OBP a lowly .303.
They are not a lead-off hitter's numbers. A person who bats first has to be a player who avoids outs, not make them 70% of the time. His lack of respect for Charlie and the rest of the Phillies' team was on display Thursday, when Rollins decided to dog it down to first base on a fly ball that was dropped and he was stuck at first base because of his lack of hustle.
Manuel has been nothing short of horrendous in managing his pitching staff in 2012. He leaves worn-out starters in too long and makes even worse decisions when he decides who to bring into pitch from the bullpen. It seems every string that Charlie pulls turns into another late-inning Phillies loss.
If Ruben wants to get back on top of the NL East, he will cut ties with Charlie Manuel and start a new Phillies dynasty.
It all starts with Hall of Fame second baseman Ryne Sandberg. Kevin Frandsen and Erik Kratz, who both have put up torrid numbers after being called up from Triple-A have publicly raved about Sandberg. If the Phillies let him slip away again, it will be a mistake they pay for, for years to come.
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