Former Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel Returns To Team As Hitting Coach
The Philadelphia Phillies announced Tuesday that they have brought on former manager Charlie Manuel as a hitting coach.
The 75-year-old Manuel replaces John Mallee. Manuel, who last worked as the Phillies’ manager in 2013, holds the record for the most wins with the franchise with 780. During Manuel’s eight-year tenure as manager, he led Philadelphia to a 2008 World Series title and five consecutive division championships.
Phillies general manager Matt Klentak told reporters that hiring Manuel is part of the organization’s plan to improve its record significantly in the second half of the season, especially after Philadelphia hit a heavy slump following the All-Star break last month.
“The reason we did this today is because we have 44 more game remaining and we’re two games out of the playoffs,” Klentak said. “I know a lot of people are burying us, saying we have no chance and we haven’t played well.
“Part of that is correct. We have not played well. We have not hit well, especially since the All-Star break. But we are not buried and we are not out. It makes sense to try something different rather than continuing to do the same thing.”
Philadelphia has ranked last in the National League in RBIs (109), batting average (.240) and extra-base hits (82) since the All-Star break.
The Phillies’ struggles this season have surprised many fans given the recent additions of players like Bryce Harper, Jean Segura and J.T. Realmuto. In June, former 2013 MVP Andrew McCutchen sustained a season-ending knee injury.
Manuel previously worked as a manager and hitting coach for the Cleveland Indians.
Philadelphia (60-58) is fourth in the NL East, just two games behind in the NL wild-card race and one game behind the third-place New York Mets. The Phillies are coming off a four-game series against the San Francisco Giants, only one game of which they won.