After a dismal season, the Philadelphia Phillies have made their first significant move of the off-season in firing long-time pitching coach Rich Dubee.
Dubee was relived of his duties after a dismal pitching season in Philly, but his release was still fairly surprising. In the decade, the 55-year-old pitching coach oversaw 5 division championship winning staffs, and frankly, it isn’t apparent what he could have done differently this season.
It is certainly possible that new manager Ryne Sandberg wanted his own guy in place, and that makes some semblance of sense. However, MLB coaches don’t often last as long as Dubee (13 years on staff, 9 years as pitching coach), and it’s always jarring to seea guy with that kind of tenure let go due to factors that include performance.
Yes, the Phillies finished 73-89 even with the services of Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, and Roy Halladay, but I’m not positive how that was laid at the feet of Dubee. Lee was tremendous all season, Hamels was much, much better than his win-loss record indicates, and it appears (quite plainly) that Halladay was injured all season. Throw in the fact that the rest of the staff (sans closer Jonathan Papelbon) was virtually void of high-end talent, and it makes it difficult to see why Dubee was the scapegoat.