Leave it to the Phillies brass to sneak this one in on the day after the election and the start of the basketball season. I didn't even find out until around 11 last night as it wasn't on the news or anything.
I really don't like the choice especially if Leyland wanted the job. Manuel has been in the organization and probably has been campaigning for the job for over a year. I dunno I guess there are worst guys for the job then Jim Thomes mentor I just wanted some fresh blood really. Charlie Manuel seems to me like the type of manager who will just keep us where we are right now around .500 maybe a winning season. Leyland would have spoken his mind and try to make his own personal stamp on the team.
As of right now this is the Phillies lineup 1b- Thome 2b- Utley SS-Rollins 3b- Bell C- Lieberthal LF- Burrell CF- ???? RF- Abreu
Rotation L- Wolf R- Myers R- Padilla R- Lidle ????
I really don't see them making a splash at Beltran although they claim they will try. I guess were in store for another year of questions at CF, tons of strikeouts in the lineup and bad starting pitching. Its amazing that the Phillies franchise has NEVER turned out a half decent pitcher in 35 years from the farm system and yet we didn't trade Gavin Floyd because he is the future. I have no idea why the management would think Floyd will succeed when so many have failed before him. Just to think if we would have given up Howard and Floyd we could have had Beltran and it could have been us in the playoffs and maybe the World Series. Oh and sometime this season the Phillies should lose there 10,000 game. Worst franchise in sports history and yet I still love them.
My problem with Leyland was the Rockies job. If he was hired, and if the Phillies shit the bed, would he just walk away? I know he was burnt out during the Rockies tenure, but coaching is a bitch of a profession, and it gets harder as you get older (My dad's a 64 year old wrestling coach, and it just keeps getting harder and harder.)
I think it's a little unfair to say that Manuel was campaigning for the job. Both Bowa and Ed Wade have said that Charlie has kept his nose away from the manager for the very reason that everybody speculated that Manuel would be the manager.
As for the lineups, I don't think that Cormier is 100% back with the team. I'd like to see them keep Eric Milton, and they have a chance to do that. Lidle too, if he can keep up with his mechanics.
In CF, I'd expect somebody like Steve Finley over Beltran. Finley was just about in a Phillies uniform last year, but he nixed the trade because he doesn't want to go to a East Coast team. Maybe he'll change his mind. Either way, give up on the Marlon Byrd experiment (or at least dump him in the minors for at least another season until he gets consistent). It would also be nice if they keep Polanco in the offseason. If he'd be willing to platoon (3B, SS, 2B) he could play once or twice a week, if not more, and he's a great defensive replacement with a solid bat.
*sigh* I've always been a strict believer that power doesn't necessarily have to win ballgames - if the speed and defense are there, then a team stands a chance. Of course, pitching is always a necessary component.