Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel Replaced by Ryne Sandberg
UPDATE: Friday, Aug. 16
From Philadelphia Inquirer reporter Matt Gelb:
Phillies had planned to honor Charlie Manuel on the field before tonight’s game for his 1,000th win. That will not happen. Manuel left.— Matt Gelb (@magelb) August 16, 2013
UPDATE: Friday, Aug. 16
MLB's Twitter feed confirms the news:
BREAKING: #Phillies replace manager Charlie Manuel with third-base coach Ryne Sandberg for remainder of season.— MLB (@MLB) August 16, 2013
Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer explains Sandberg's official title:
Sandberg’s title is “interim manager.”— Matt Gelb (@magelb) August 16, 2013
Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer broke the news of Manuel's tenure ending abruptly on Friday, and a source told CBSSports.com's Danny Knobler that Sandberg would be the successor:
Charlie Manuel is no longer manager of the Phillies, according to a source.— Matt Gelb (@magelb) August 16, 2013
Ryne Sandberg will be the next Phillies manager, source says.— Danny Knobler (@DannyKnoblerCBS) August 16, 2013
CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury noted that a press conference will take place at 2:30 p.m. to announce the decision:
Phillies to make manager change, sources say. Press at 230.— Jim Salisbury (@JSalisburyCSN) August 16, 2013
Since winning the World Series in 2008 and valiantly defending the crown the following postseason, Manuel has been unable to replicate similar success. The roster is filled with talent, but this is clearly the end of an era with an aging team in Philadelphia.
It hasn't helped that superstar slugger Ryan Howard has been out with an injury since early July and isn't likely to return in 2013. His absence has been felt, as the Phillies rank 25th in MLB in runs scored.
Additionally, former Cy Young Award winner Roy Halladay has been out with shoulder problems, which has hurt a pitching staff that sports a team ERA of 4.27, a WHIP of 1.37 and a .265 opponents' batting average—all among the worst in baseball.
While it's difficult to link Manuel to all the trials and tribulations, it seems appropriate that the organization would bring a younger skipper in Sandberg into the dugout to usher in the Phillies of the future.
Sandberg began his career with Philadelphia in 1981 before embarking on a Hall of Fame career with the Chicago Cubs. He had served as the Phillies' third base coach and infield instructor before this promotion.
Manuel's time has run its course, but he was undeniably successful. He guided the franchise to five consecutive National League East division titles before missing the playoffs with an 81-81 record in 2012.
Things have gone far south of .500 in the current campaign. However, Manuel will still end his eight-plus years in Philadelphia with a record of 780-636 (h/t baseball-reference.com), with two NL pennants and the aforementioned World Series ring. He leaves Philly with the most wins in franchise history (h/t ESPN Stats and Info).
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