Incumbent Manager: Ryne Sandberg
Ryne Sandberg waited for years to get his shot at managing a MLB team. He finally got the opportunity with Philadelphia and he has to wonder if he was dealt a bad hand.
After finishing up the 2013 season with a 20-22 record, the Phillies were confident in Sandberg being the right man for the job. However, 2014 turned into another step in the downward slide for a Phillies organization stuck in the rut of having too many aging veterans on non-tradable contracts and too little minor league resources to engage in a full-out rebuild. That’s placed Sandberg in the unenviable position of having to cater toward a veteran class uninterested in rebuilding and young players trying to get their shot.
After finishing the 2014 season 73-89, there were whispers that Sandberg was having trouble getting through to the players in the Phillies clubhouse. That was evidenced by a rift between the manager and Jimmy Rollins a season ago. However, with Rollins now with the Dodgers, the same whispers are there and the onfield results possibly show that with the Phillies struggling along at 5-11.
Gardenhire may not want to step into such an untenable situation, but he’s also known for developing relationships with his players and has overseen a rebuild in Minnesota in the past. If the Phillies can find a way to work their way out from under some of those contracts (Ryan Howard, Cole Hamels), then Gardenhire could easily be in a good position to turn the organization around.
Next: The Verdict