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Welcome to Steven's Phillies Page: Article Archive. This page was launched on 12/3/96 to archive information formerly on Steven's Phillies Page.

UPDATE 10/06/2001: One article has been added to the archive.

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Table of Contents

Terry Francona named manager of Phillies; Coaching Staff Changes
Santiago may not be re-signed as the Phils look at Lieberthal for '97
Pitching Staff Rumors
Rex Hudler Signed by Phils
Eisenreich and Fernandez lost in free agency
Phils lose Benny; get Marks, Ramos
Phils Get Scott Ruffcorn from White Sox
1997 Phillies Coaching Staff
Phillies Personnel Changes this offseason- through 2/7/97
Free Agent Slugger Danny Tartabull signed by Phillies
Phillies go 2-1 to start their Spring Exhibition Schedule
Phillies thrash World Champ Yankees
Phillies enter second week of Grapefruit ball '97 at 5-3
Phils split split squad games
Phils are 2-2 in last four games after loss to Dodgers
Phils win three Grapefruit league games in a row
Spring Training 1997- Phillies win 3 in a row before losing to St. Louis
Phillies Resign Curt Schilling
Phils open 1997 with 3-6 West Coast Trip
Phillies in thick of 1998 Wild Card Race
Phillies Active in Offseason
Phillies Off to Hot Start in Grapefruit League '99
Schilling, Bryd, Lieberthal named to 1999 National League All-Star Team
1999 Phillies at the Break: At 46-40, the wildcard is a possibility
Phillies Prepare for 2000 Season

Phillies Prepare for 2000 Season
by Steven Hough

01/01/00- The Philadelphia Phillies have been busy thus far this offseason, as they aim to improve upon last season's 77-85 record and make the playoffs in 2000. Several transactions have already addressed weaknesses on the '99 club. All-Star right-handed pitcher Andy Ashby, San Diego's staff ace last season, was traded to the Phillies for Carlton Loewer, Steve Montgomery, and Adam Eaton. Loewer, 26, started the season in the Phillies rotation but missed much of the season due to injury. The number one draft choice of the Phillies in 1994, Loewer had a 2-6 record and 5.12 ERA with the Phillies last year. Montgomery, 29, had a 3.34 ERA working out of the Phillies bullpen last year. Eaton, a pitcher in the Phillies minor-league system, is a top pitching prospect and was the Phillies number one pick in 1996. Ashby, an All-Star, gives the Phillies a strong pitcher to complement Curt Schilling at the top of the rotation.

The Phillies bullpen has also been strengthened this offseason. Mike Jackson, one of baseball's best closers the past few years as a member of the Cleveland Indians, has been signed to serve as the Phils' new closer. Jeff Brantley, the Phillies closer at the beginning of the 1999 season, has been resigned and will be the Phils new setup man. These moves allow the closer for much of last season, Wayne Gomes, to return to setup relief duties, which he appears better suited for.

Unfortunately, not all of the news this offseason has been good. Three time All-Star and staff ace Curt Schilling will be out until May after undergoing shoulder surgery. To help fill the void in the would be rotation of Schilling, Ashby, 1999 All-Star Paul Byrd, Robert Person, and young lefty Randy Wolf, the Phillies acquired righty Chris Brock from the Giants for former catching prospect Bobby Estalella. Brock will compete for the fifth spot in the rotation this spring, and will probably join the bullpen when Schilling returns to action.

Phillies at the Break: At 46-40, the wildcard is a possibility
by Steven Hough

7/15/99- At the conclusion of the first half of the season, the Phillies are still in the running for the postseason. The Phils have a 46-40 record, putting them in third place in the NL East, 7.5 games behind the Braves, but only 3.5 games out of the wild card.

The Rotation: At the All-Star Break, the Phillies rotation consisted of Curt Schilling, Paul Byrd, Randy Wolf, Chad Ogea, and Robert Person. Schilling (13-4, 3.13 ERA), the staff ace, has had another excellent season, starting the All-Star Game while representing the Phillies for the third straight year. Byrd (11-5, 3.94), a waiver pickup by the Phillies last season, also made the All-Star Game after blosomming into a solid starter for the Phils. Rookie lefthander Randy Wolf (4-0, 3.49) has been spectacular since he was called up from the minors, striking out 42 batters in 38.2 innings, and providing the Phillies with a third dependable starter. The Phillies have gone 31-12 when Schilling, Byrd, or Wolf pitched. Unfortunately, Ogea (4-9, 5.43) and Person (2-4, 6.35) have both struggled. Carlton Loewer, out of the rotation due to injury the past month, should be healthy soon and could provide a boost to the rotation. Phillies General Manager Ed Wade is also searching for a trade to get another reliable starter.

The Lineup: The Phillies starting lineup has done well this year. Catcher Mike Lieberthal (.308 AVG, 18 HR, 61 RBI) returned from a season ending injury in 1998 to play in the All-Star game in 1999. Centerfielder Doug Glanville (.321, 6, 48) has done well as the leadoff hitter and has stolen 19 bases. Rightfielder Bobby Abreu (.323, 13, 45) continues to improve and has stolen 11 bases this season. At third base, Scott Rolen (.261, 19, 54) has stuggled but is still on pace to break his career high for homers. First baseman Rico Brogna (.261, 11, 44) has once again been solid defensively for the Phillies. New leftfielder Ron Gant (.260, 9, 38) stuggled early but has since hit better. Rookie secondbaseman Marlon Anderson (.248, 4, 37) has struggled after an impressive September call-up last year. Shortstop Desi Relaford (.260, 1, 26) is out indefinitely with a wrist injury.

Three Phillies named to National League All-Star Team
by Steven Hough

1999 All-Star Game Logo
Curt Schilling Paul Byrd Mike Lieberthal
From left to right, Phillies All-Stars Schilling, Byrd, and Lieberthal

7/7/99- Three Phillies players were named to the National League All-Star Team today by NL manager Bruce Bochy and league president Len Coleman. The players selected were starting pitchers Curt Schilling and Paul Byrd and catcher Mike Lieberthal. Although no Phillies were voted in by the fans, this is the first year since 1995 that the Phillies have had more than the single, required representative go to the All-Star Game.

The 1999 All-Star Game in Boston will be the first All-Star appearance for both Lieberthal and Byrd. This is Schilling's third consecutive All-Star game, all as a representative of the Phillies. The All-Star Game will be played Tuesday night in Boston's Fenway Park. Their statistics through the time of their selection follow.

Schilling YR
Byrd YR
Lieberthal YR

Phillies Off to Hot Start in Grapefruit League
by Steven Hough

3/12/99- The Phillies have gotten off to a hot start this year in spring training exhibition games. Currently, The Phillies are 6-1 after defeating the Detroit Tigers yesterday, and have Curt Schilling facing Boston's knuckleballer Tim Wakefield tonight.

The battle for spots in the Phillies rotation is continuing throughout spring training. Staff ace Curt Schilling and newcomer Chad Ogea are locks for spots. Phillies farm product Carlton Loewer is likely to return to be in the rotation again this year, but the final two spots are up in the air. New lefty Paul Spoljaric is getting a look, as is Paul Byrd (5-2 after the Phillies acquired him last year), oft-injured Mike Grace, who pitched well on Wednesday, and former All-Star Tyler Green, who, coming off surgery in the offseason, is a longshot for the rotation. With 24 games left in the preseason, however, a decision is not likely imminent; also, General Manager Ed Wade is still trying to acquire a veteran pitcher to add depth to the rotation.

Phillies Active in Offseason
by Steven Hough

12/12/98- Its only December, but already the Phillies have made several offseason transactions. In a series of deals the Phillies have acquired slugging outfielder Ron Gant, Righthanded pitchers Jeff Brantley, Chad Ogea, and Cliff Politte, and lefty pitcher Paul Spoljaric. However, the Phillies have lost former All-Star closer Ricky Bottalico, and pitchers Mark Portugal, Mark Leiter, and Jerry Spradlin. The Phillies have also lost backup infielder Mark Lewis and reserve catcher Mark Parent.

These deals fill several needs on the Phillies- namely, a slugging outfielder and pitching help- but losing Bottalico and the promising Jerry Spradlin is disappointing. While the Phillies are not expected to be active on the free agent market- in fact, all of the front line free agents have already signed with other teams- more changes may be in the winds in an effort to improve upon last year's 75-87 record.

Phillies in thick of Wild Card Race
by Steven Hough

8/1/98- Here it is, the beginning of August, and the Phillies are still in the race for the NL Wild Card- something which even this spring would have been considered impossible. Although the Phillies lost two in a row entering tonight's game, and are 15.5 games behind the Braves in the NL East, they remain only 5.5 games behind the Cubs for the Wild Card (see Standings).

Even though the Phillies made no major moves before the trading deadline last night, offseason acquisitions of OF Doug Glanville and Bobby Abreu and the strong play of new shortstop Desi Relaford, coupled with the good seasons of returning Phils Jefferies, 1997 NL ROY Scott Rolen, and Curt Schilling have kept the Phillies afloat thus far. Hopefully, with a little luck, the Phillies will reach the playoffs this year for the first time since 1993.

Phillies open the Season with 3-6 West Coast Trip
Of three wins, two were by staff ace Curt Schilling
by Steven Hough

4/20/97- The Phillies ended their season opening nine game west coast swing with a 3-6 record. The Phillies looked impressive in their opener in L.A., winning 3-0 behind the masterful pitching of winner Curt Schilling. The Phils, however, lost in both of the final two games, 5-1 in the second and 2-1 in the third game, behind victories by Dodgers starters Nomo and Ismael Valdes, respectively.

The Phillies then had a three game series in San Diego. Losses in the first two games by 13-3 and 1-4, in that order, saw Bobby Munoz and Mike Mimbs, respectively, lose for the Phillies. In the final game of the series, the Phillies won 3-2, to improve their record to 2-4. Curt Schilling once again got the win for the Phillies, as he pitched eight innings, giving up 7 hits and no walks while striking out seven. The Phillies scored all of their runs on solo homers- one each by Darren Daulton, Derrick May, and the game-winner by Wendell Magee, Jr. in the seventh. Bottalico earned his second save of the season.

The Phillies ended their west coast trip with a three game series against the Giants in San Francisco. In the first game, the Phillies lost 4-3 as losing pitcher, and starter, Calvin Maduro went only four innings, surrendering six walks. In the second game of the series, the Phillies won 2-1 as former Giant Mark Leiter got the win. It was the Phillies first win by a pitcher other than Schilling this season. Scott Rolen had two hits for the Phillies, including the game winning hit- a single which scored Jefferies from third base. Bottalico picked up his third save of the season for the 3-5 Phils. In the final game of the series, the Phillies lost 3-0. Starter Bobby Munoz got the loss for the Phils, as they finished their west coast trip with a 3-6 record.

Phillies Resign Curt Schilling
$15.45 Million Deal keeps the staff ace a Phil through at least the end of the 2000 season
by Steven Hough

4/20/97- On April 3, the Phillies and Curt Schilling finally agreed to a contract extension on, after weeks of negotiations. Under his old contract, Schilling will make $3.5 million this season. The new deal calls for him to receive $4.65 million in 1998, $5.15 million in 1999 and $5.65 million in 2000, with a $6.5 million option for 2001 which is automatically activated if Schilling pitches a total of 450 innings in 1998-2000. The deal also includes a no-trade clause for Schilling.

Schilling became a Phillie in 1992, as the Astros traded him to the Phils for pitcher Jason Grimsley. Since that time, Schilling has consistently been the Phillies best starter. Schilling is one of the few remaining Phils who played on the 1993 NL Champion Team. In that NLCS, Schilling received the NLCS MVP award, pitching 16 innings, racking up 19 strikeouts with a 1.69 ERA. Last year, Schilling missed the first six weeks of the season while recovering from shoulder surgery performed in 1995, yet led the NL in complete games with eight. In 183.1 innings pitched last year, Curt went 9-10 with a 3.19 ERA and 182 strikeouts, despite the fact that the Phillies went 67-95, worst in the NL.

Phillies win three in a row before losing yesterday
In their last 5 games, they are 3-1-1
By Steven Hough

3/22/97- The Phillies continued their winning ways over the last five games, going 3-1-1. The lone loss came in yesterday's 10-0 slaughtering at the hands of the St. Louis Cardinals. Phillies starter Tyler Green was rocked for nine runs in only 3 1/3 innings pitched, giving up 11 hits in the process. In the third, Green, who missed all of 1996 due to shoulder surgery, gave up homers to Cardinals Ron Gant and Mark Sweeney. Green later gave up a homer to Willie Mc Gee. Bobby Munoz entered the game in the fourth to replace Green, and pitched four innings, giving up one hit, and no walks to four strikeouts. The Phils had only four hits in their first loss this year at their spring home, Jack Russell Stadium.

In Wednesday's game, the Phillies won their third straight game, beating the Cleveland Indians 9-2. Phillies Ruben Amaro Jr. and Desi Relaford homered; Chad Curtis homered for the Indians. Phils Pitcher Mark Leiter pitched 6 innings, giving up only one run.

In Tuesday's game, the Phillies edged the Kansas City Royals 6-5. The Phillies entered the bottom of the ninth tied 5-5. Brent Bowers won the game with a sacrifice fly, scoring Ricky Otero. Phils starter Mark Portugal pitched 6 innings, giving up 7 hits, 2 runs, and a walk, while striking out 2. Mike Lieberthal and Gregg Jefferies each had three hits for the Phillies; Mickey Morandini chipped in with two. Ricky Bottalico got the win for Philadelphia.

On Monday, the Phillies won 6-5 over the Chicago White Sox in 10 innings. Desi Relaford's two run homer in the tenth sent the Phils home happy. Staff ace Curt Schilling pitched four innings, giving up a lone run on Robin Ventura's homer. Darren Daulton of the Phillies hit his third homer of the spring, as he continued his comeback from knee problems.

Sunday's game featured one of spring training's treats- a tie! The Yankees tied the Phillies 3-3 in 11 innings. Pitcher Tyler Green started and went five innings for the Phils.

Phils win both split squad games against the ChiSox Saturday
Also beat Rangers on Friday
By Steven Hough

3/16/97- The Phillies continued their good spring yesterday, winning both split squad games against the Chicago White Sox. In the first game, held at the Phillies' spring home, Clearwater, the Phils won 8-7. Starter Mike Grace of the Phillies gave up five earned runs in five innings of work, although four of those came on Mike Cameron's first inning grand slam. The Phils' Darren Daulton went 1 for 2, including a stolen base early in the game, to continue his comeback attempt.

In the other game, the Phils won 10-8 on the road. An eight inning 6-6 tie was broken by Phillie John Zuber's three run double. Rookie Scott Rolen had 3 hits, as he and fellow Phil Kevin Jordan each homered. Scott Ruffcorn got the win.

In Friday's (3/14) game, the Phillies beat the Texas Rangers 8-5. Phils second baseman Mickey Morandini left the game after receiving a hard slide while turning the double play, but apparently is not badly injured. Phils starter Mark Leiter pitched four innings, giving up two runs and three hits. The Phillies had 13 hits in the game, including two each by Kevin Stocker and Ricky Otero.

Phils go 2-2 over last four games
They enter the weekend on a loss to the Dodgers
By Steven Hough

3/13/97- The Phillies lost 5-2 to the Dodgers today, as Dodger Eric Karros hit two home runs, including a shot off losing pitcher Bobby Munoz. Danny Tartabull and Desi Relaford each hit solo shots in the Phils losing effort.

In the Wednesday (3/12) game, the Phillies beat the division rival Atlanta Braves, 3-1. As most of the Phils regulars had off after Tuesday's night game, the only players who played and are likely to start for the Phillies were OF Wendell Magee and C Mike Lieberthal. The game had a great pitching matchup, as 1996 Cy Young winner John Smoltz of the Braves squared off against Phils ace Curt Schilling. Tied 1-1 in the ninth, the Phils pulled ahead on a suicide squeeze bunt set down by catcher Chris Tremie.

Tuesday's game saw the Phillies lose to the Baltimore Orioles 7-6. Darren Daulton had two homers for Philadelphia, but it wasn't enough, as pitcher Mike Mussina pitched 4 scoreless innings for the O's. Rule 5 draftee Edgar Ramos got the loss for the Phils.

The Phillies beat the Boston Red Sox 5-4 on Monday. Tied 4-4 in the ninth, David Doster hit a two out RBI single to score Kevin Jordan and win the game. Third baseman and top prospect Scott Rolen hit his first homer of the spring in the Phillies victory. Mike Grace pitched 3 innings, giving up a lone earned run, and Wayne Gomes got his second win of spring training.

Phillies split split squad games
Phillies beat the Pirates; lose to the Red Sox
By Steven Hough

3/9/97- The Phillies played two games today, both split squad. Most of the projected starters stayed in Clearwater to face the Pirates, while the others traveled to face a split squad Red Sox team.

In the Pirates game, the Phillies beat the Pirates for the third time in as many chances this spring. Reggie Harris got the win for the Phils in their 4-3 victory. Gregg Jefferies homered in the eighth for Philadelphia, his second homerun this spring.

In the Red Sox game, the Phillies projected role players faced a split squad Red Sox team. Steve Avery got the win for the Sox, while Calvin Maduro got the loss in the BoSox's 13-2 slaughter of the Phils. Tim Spehr hit homers in consecutive innings, including a grand slam, for the Red Sox. The Phillies' lone RBI came on Kevin Sefcik's sacrifice fly.

Phillies enter second week of Spring Training at 5-3
Loss today to the Tigers halts two game win streak
By Steven Hough

3/8/97- The Phillies lost 2-1 to the Tigers, as Mark Portugal picked up the loss. Detroit pitching limited the Phils to only 4 hits in the game. Both of the Tigers' runs came off of RBI singles by Damion Easley, one each in the first and second innings. The lone Phillies run was scored on Scott Rolen's fourth inning RBI single.

3/7 BOSTON at Phillies- The Phillies avenged their loss last week to the Red Sox. This time around, the Phils won 11-4, as Wayne Gomes picked up the win for starter Curt Schilling. In the third inning, Schilling faced 1995 AL MVP Mo Vaughn. With the bases loaded, Vaughn hit a two run single to put the Bo Sox ahead 3-1. The Phils came back to score 8 runs in the sixth, including a three run homer by Mickey Morandini.

3/6 PITTSBURGH at Phillies- The Phillies beat the Pirates 9-8, their second win (in two games) over Pittsburgh this spring. The Phils got off to a 1-0 lead, only to fall behind 5-4 in the seventh. The game was tied 8-8 in the ninth until the Phils scored one to win.

3/5 at Blue Jays- The Phils lost 13-9, as losing pitcher Mike Grace got shelled by the Jays, giving up 6 runs on 7 hits in only 2 1/3 innings of work. It was the first start of the spring for Grace, who missed much of last season with a shoulder injury. Leading the charge for the Jays was our 1993 World Series fiend, Joe Carter, who homered twice for the Toronto. Firstbaseman Rico Brogna of the Phillies had a homer while going 2 for 3 in the Phils' losing effort.

Phillies Thrash World Series Champ Yankees
The team improves to 3-1, as they win 13-5
By Steven Hough

3/4/97- The Phillies won in their fourth game of the spring, improving to 3-1, as they beat the World Series Champion Yankees 13-5. Tied 2-2 in the bottom of the fourth, the Phils erupted for 9 runs to go ahead for good. Ron Blazier got the win for the Phils, his first of the spring, while Gregg Jefferies, Derrick May, and Mark Parent each hit homers. Parent went 3 for 3, with 3 RBIs, two runs scored, as well as hitting his second homer of the spring. Darren Daulton and Jefferies each went 2 for 3.

Phillies Start Strong in Grapefruit League
The Phils win their first two games before falling to 2-1
By Steven Hough

3/3/97- The Phillies opened their 1997 Grapefruit League exhibition schedule with a 7-6 win over the Pirates. Phils starter Calvin Maduro gave up three earned runs in two innings of work, including a homer to Dale Sveum. Down 6-4, the Phillies scored three runs in the eighth to go ahead for good.

In Sunday's game, the Phillies faced their 1993 World Series opponents, the Toronto Blue Jays. Fortunately, this time around the Phillies won 3-0 as Curt Schilling started, fanning three in three innings. Mark Parent had a two run homer, and Ruben Amaro hit a solo shot, as all the Phils' runs came off of homers.

In today's game, the Phillies dropped to 2-1, as they lost their first game of the spring, 8-6 to Boston. Two homers were hit off of Phils starter Mark Portugal, and one of the only bright spots was catcher Bobby Estalella's eighth inning homer.

Phillies Sign Danny Tartabull
The Free agent slugger fills the Phillies cleanup void
by Steven Hough

2/20/97- The Phillies Signed free agent slugger Danny Tartabull to a one-year deal plus a club option for '98. The 34-year old outfielder played for the White Sox last season, racking up 27 homers and 101 RBI, while batting .254. In his 13-year career, Tartabull hit 262 homers and 925 RBI.

The signing gives the Phils the cleanup hitter they have been looking for all spring, and possibly eliminates the need for starter Curt Schilling or second baseman Mickey Morandini to be traded for a power hitting outfielder, as was rumored this winter.

Personnel Changes this offseason- through 2/7/97 Players Acquired
Brent Bowers from Baltimore*
Rico Brogna from Mets
Tim Fortugno from Detroit
Rex Hudler from Anaheim
Mark Leiter from Montreal
Derrick May from Houston*
Mark Parent from Baltimore
Mark Portugal from Cincinnati
Scott Ruffcorn from White Sox
Jerry Spradlin from Cincinnati

Players Lost
Toby Borland to Mets
Glenn Dishman to Detroit
Jim Eisenreich to Florida
Sid Fernandez to Houston
Ricardo Jordan to Mets
Glenn Murray to Cincinnati
Benito Santiago to Toronto
Russ Springer to Houston

Phillies offseason players lost/gained is from ESPNET Sportszone
Info on the other teams is available at
An "*" indicates that the player signed a minor league deal
Players listed in alphabetical order

News and Notes

1997 Phillies Coaching Staff
Manger- Terry Francona
Batting Coach- Hal McRae
Pitching Coach- Galen Cisco
Bullpen Coach- Joe Rigoli
Bench Coach- Chuck Cottier
First Base Coach- Brad Mills
Third Base Coach- John Vukovich

1/11/97: Signings, Etc.
Phils Get Scott Ruffcorn from White Sox
The Phillies purchased the contract of Scott Ruffcorn from the Chicago White Sox yesterday. The 28 year old righty pitcher was considered a top prospect for the Sox, but had a shoulder injury in 1995. Phillies GM Lee Thomas had reportedly been interested in Ruffcorn for a year. Contract details were not disclosed. Although he struggled in his few Major League stints, Ruff corn's minor league numbers (91-96) were impressive. During this time, he went 54-23 while striking out 685 and posting a 3.03 ERA. In his 12 major league games, Ruffcorn went 0-5 with a 9.68 ERA in 30 2/3 innings pitched. He gave up 34 walks to only 13 K's in these stints.

12/12/96: Signings, Etc.
Free Agent News: Benny's Out, Marks are in
Yesterday, the Phillies signed free agent catcher Mark Parent and pitchers Mark Portugal and Mark Leiter.

Portugal received a two year, $5 million deal. The 34 year old pitcher has a career record of 92-76. With the Reds last year, Portugal went 8-9 with a 3.98 ERA.

Mark Leiter gets $4.3 million over two years. The 33 year old split time between the Giants and Expos, logging a 4.92 ERA and a 8-12 record for the year.

Catcher Mark Parent played with both the Tigers and Orioles last year. 1996 Phillies Catcher Benito Santiago was signed by the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday to a two year deal, worth $6.5 million plus a $3.5 million option for 1999.

RULE 5 DRAFT: Phillies pick Ramos

The Phillies had the first pick in Monday's Rule 5 Draft, and used it to select righthanded minor league pitcher Edgar Ramos. The 21 year old was taken from the Houston Astros, splitting time at single and double A levels. He finished a combined 15-5 with a 2.85 ERA.

In the Minor League Rule 5 draft, the Phillies triple A affiliate, Scranton, selected catcher Chris Tremie and outfielder Scott Pagano.

12/3/96: Signings, Etc.
The Florida Marlins announced today that they had signed Phillies free agent Jim Eisenreich to a two year deal worth $3 million dollars. Eisenreich had been with the team since the start of the 1993 season.

Yesterday, Phillies free agent pitcher Sid Fernandez was signed by the Houston Astros to a one year deal. The 34 year old Fernandez will make $375,000 base with a $825,000 bonus if he starts 30+ games. In 11 games in 1996, Fernandez went 3-6 with a 3.43 ERA, and started opening day for the Phillies. He was injured much of last season, eventually undergoing season ending surgery

Signings, Etc.
The Phillies signed utility man Rex Hudler to a two year deal, worth a reported total of 2.3 million dollars. Considered to be an intense player, the 36 year old Hudler is expected to play right field 4-6 times a week. Last year, as an Angel, Hudler batted .311 with 40 RBI and 16 HR.

Pitching Staff Rumors
If the season began today, and none of our pitchers were injured (dream on), the Phillies starting 4 would be as follows:

  • Curt Schilling
  • Mike Grace
  • Bobby Munoz
  • Tyler Green

The last spot in the rotation would go to Matt Beech, Michael Mimbs, Mike Williams, or Calvin Maduro. The Phillies hope to sign two above average pitchers before the start of the season. Names mentioned include Bob Tweksbury and our old amigo Terry Mulholland.

News and Notes
It sounds as though the Phillies are not going to resign catcher Benito Santiago, going with youngster Mike Lieberthal, who received the Paul Owens award for best player in the Phillies "Pharm" system a few years back. Santiago hit 30 homers last year as he provided steady defense behind the plate.

Terry Francona named manager of Phillies; Coaching Staff Changes

Article (c) Steven Hough, 1996

Terry Francona and Lee Thomas

Picture from Philadelphia Inquirer webpage at

Terry Francona was named the new manager of the Phillies this week (week of 10/28), replacing the fired Jim Fregosi. Francona comes over from being the Detroit Tigers third base coach. He has never managed in the major leagues, but is a former utility player and minor league manager.

Francona is considered the right man for the job due in part to his great patience, needed as the Phillies go into another rebuilding phase. His experience on the Tigers makes it easier for him to be a part of what will be very likely a bad team.

Francona received a two year deal from the club (reportedly worth about 250,000 annually), and already his loyalty has shown, turning down a Boston interview after being interviewed by the Phillies and expressing his loyalty to the organization.

The rest of the staff has been shaken up this year as pitching coach Jim Wright and batting coach Dennis Menke have been fired, and third base coach Larry Bowa will not return next season. Managerial candidate Hal McRae is rumored to become the Phils new batting coach. It is thought that Bench Coach John Vukovich will be promoted to third base coach, and that ex-Mariners manager Chuck Cottier may become the bench coach. Rumors have also surfaced about Yankees bullpen coach Tony Cloninger replacing Wright as the Phillies pitching coach. Bullpen coach Joe Rigoli is likely to return next season. The first base coach vacancy will be filled by someone of Francona's choice, possibly Brad Mills, a teammate of Francona's when they were on the Expos.

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