Off-season moves are already starting to materialize for the Philadelphia Phillies, although the season just ended. Within days of their final game, General Manager Matt Klentak stepped down. He will be staying with the team in another position to be determined later while Ned Rice will serve as interim GM.
Off-season moves are already starting to materialize for the Philadelphia Phillies, although the season just ended. Within days of their final game, General Manager Matt Klentak stepped down. He will be staying with the team in another position to be determined later while Ned Rice will serve as interim GM. Also leaving the organization is head pitching coach Bryan Price. Price, while in the middle of a contract, has decided to move on to spend more time with family.
The Phillies will spend the off-season not only building their on-field talent, but now solidifying some new front office staff as well. Philadelphia went 326-382 during Klentak’s five seasons. With no postseason appearances and an ever-changing bullpen, it was a tough term.
There were some bright spots during Klentak’s tenure with the Phils including signing Bryce Harper for 13 years and gaining J.T. Realmuto behind the plate this summer. He also made some moves right before the trade deadline in an effort to be competitive during the 2020 season. However, he traded away top pitching prospect Sixto Sanchez for Realmuto, who has yet to sign an extension with the Phils.
While the Phillies look for a permanent replacement, Klentak will look for another spot in the organization. Managing partner John Middleton notes, "We've made progress, but we haven't made enough progress fast enough.”
Bryan Price, 58, recently announced he is moving on from his pitching coach post, which was apparently a surprise to everyone. Hired at the beginning of the season, Price led some of the top starters in the league and a bullpen that struggled with consistency. 2021 will bring the fifth different pitching coach in five seasons for Philadelphia.
A highly touted instructor, Price notes the grueling season, travel schedule, and lack of time with his family as his reasons for departure. He had two years left on his contract.
"We were all shocked because he fit in so well," Girardi said Sunday night. "He was great to work with. Great attitude. The pitchers loved him. He connected with them extremely well. They don't get any better than Bryan.”
Middleton, Girardi, and Rice will work to fill two extremely important job openings this winter. It is more than likely that the organization will look to fit the puzzle pieces around Girardi, who is entering year two of a three-year contract. Middleton seems to lean towards someone in tune with the high-tech analytical side of the game while balancing old-school scouting and player development. While there is no rush, there are a few names you might hear being thrown into the ring. Royals assistant GM J.J. Picollo, who was also a candidate during the last round of GM interviews, and Dave Dombrowski could pop up, but at this point it is too early to tell.