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Phillies already making coaching changes, Sam Perlozzo gone

It did not take long to make the first off-season change for the Phillies. According to multiple reports from the Phillies beat, first base coach Sam Perlozzo will not return for the 2013 season in Philadelphia.

On the post game show on ComcastSportsnet analyst Ricky Botallico suggested there were three guys who might not return to the coaching staff next season, ruling out Charlie Manuel and pitching coach Rich Dubee. Botallico went so far as to mention bench coach Pete Mackanin as a questionable name to return. One guy I would keep an eye on is hitting coach Greg Gross. It seems whenever a team struggles offensively the first move is to kick the hitting coach out. We’ll see what Manuel and Ruben Amaro have in mind, but Bottalico also brought up another interesting point with staff changes.

Bottalico suggested the Phillies might be making room to add Lehigh Valley IronPigs manager Ryne Sandberg to the staff. The idea would make sense as Sandberg’s name continues to become a frequent one mentioned among potential managers around Major League Baseball. If Sandberg is such a good candidate to manage a major league team at some point, and many seem to agree he would be a good one, then the Phillies would be crazy to let him get away. It’s not like this franchise has let Sandberg slip away from them before, right?

Adding Sandberg to the coaching staff would be good for the Sandberg because he would be able to get more experience coaching at the major league level, which has to be a little different than managing at triple A. Everybody likes Sandberg’s demeanor it seems but getting a little more adjusted to life in the major leagues as a coach can take some time. For the Phillies, it gives them some time to groom Manuel’s eventual replacement.

For Manuel, it puts a little more heat on his position as the team will be expected to perform at a higher level in 2013, presuming they start the year healthier.

Update: Shortly after the Perlozzo news was reported, it was announced Pete Mackanin and Greg Gross will also be cut from the staff.

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