Posts Tagged ‘Greg Gross’

5 Phillies Things to Ponder – You Rank Them!!

In Philadelphia Phillies on May 18, 2012 at 10:41 am

While driving down the interstate of Missouri I’m pondering a few things about the Phillies and the first 38 games of the season. I’ve come up with a list of 5 things and I ask you, what do you think will happen in what order? I’ll list them randomly and give you my list at the bottom.

  • ·        The Phillies take over 1st Place in the NL East.
  • ·        Greg Gross gets fired as the hitting coach.
  • ·        Carlos “Chooch” Ruiz is named the starting catcher for the NL in the All Star game.
  • ·        Cole Hamels is signed to a long term contract.
  • ·        Jimmy Rollins will be moved out of the leadoff spot permanently.


Here is our list and our reasoning:

  1. Greg Gross will be fired. It’s not fair to blame everything on the hitting coach but that’s what happens, ask Mickey Hatcher who was fired after 13 seasons as the hitting coach of the Angels because he and Albert Pujols had a disagreement and the team was underachieving at the plate. GG has been fired before in favor of Milt Thompson who was replaced again by GG. When it’s all said and done, there are a lot of the same hitters that have been here throughout and they haven’t changed, regardless of who the hitting coach is. The Phils are presently playing .500 ball, 19-19, and in last place in the NL East. They rank 4th in the NL in batting average at .261, however, they rank only 10th of 16 teams in OBP, on base percentage, are 8th in runs scored  and home runs but 15th in bases on balls. It’s a shame to say but someone may have to be the scapegoat if the Phils don’t start to score more runs and GG will be that guy. Maybe Chase Utley and Ryan Howard can help out if it’s not too late.
  2. “Chooch” is named to start in the All Star game. At this point in the season he has done it all. Always solid on defense and managing the pitching staff, he has now added some pretty significant offensive numbers. He’s sporting a .343 batting average, .388 OBP, 7 HR’s, 24 RBI’s and 19 runs scored, all second on the team to Hunter Pence. It’s a no-brainer that Chooch is the NL starting catcher.
  3. Cole Hamels signs a multi- year deal. Every time Hamels goes to the mound it’s costing the Phillies money. He’s presently 5-1 with a 2.28 ERA. He’s started 7 games and the Phils have won 6 of them. He leads the team with 49 strike outs while holding the opposition to a .229 batting average. The 28 year old lefty has not reached his prime yet and needs to be locked up for the long haul. We’ve been on that bandwagon since Spring Training. The Dodgers, Angels and Yankees will likely be interested if Cole tests the free agent market and will all be willing to dish out big money. The Matt Cain contract in San Francisco has set the bar at $120m and the Phillies need to beat it and they need to do it now. Following is the link to our preseason player profile on Hamels.
  4. The Phils take over 1st place in the NL East. The Phils have played poorly through the first 38 games of the season. Utley and Howard are out, the middle bullpen is a mess, Cliff Lee has been on the DL, Jim Thome has been a bust, Freddy Galvis, Lance Nix and John Mayberry, among others, have struggled and the Phils are only 4.5 games out of 1st place. Although the division has improved the Phillies still have the top line of starting pitchers. It’s just a matter of time until they find some consistency at the plate and start scoring runs in bunches.
  5. Jimmy Rollins is moved out of the leadoff spot. The Philly Pressbox doesn’t under Charlie Manuals love for JRoll in the leadoff spot. Those days are gone. Jimmy is presently hitting a measly .232 with an OBP of .290. That is awful for a guy in the leadoff spot.   He has also already struck out 27 times while walking only 13 and stealing 8 bases. Only Galvis and Mayberry have a lower OBP than Rollins. With Juan Pierre swinging a hot bat, .343 average, with a .388 OBP, he needs to be in the leadoff spot until he can’t get the job done. Pierre is a proven big league player and he will produce. JRoll and Manuel need to swallow the egos and move Rollins down near the bottom of the lineup where he belongs. We don’t see it happening any time soon and the Phils will suffer because of it unless Jimmy turns back the clock to 2007 and 2008. See our preseason preview of JRoll at the following link.

There you have our thoughts at close to the quarter point of the season.

What do you think????

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In Philadelphia Phillies on March 10, 2012 at 12:36 pm

Over the next 28 days Philly Pressbox ( (@phillypressbox) will be doing a review and analysis of each Phillies player, Manager Charlie Manuel and the coaching staff leading up to Opening Day 2012.  Day 2 in our series is on the most unrecognized position in all of sports the Assistant Coaches. These men spend endless hours behind the scenes working with the players as groups and individually either at home or on the road. These are thankless jobs that are held by baseball lifers. Here is a look at the 2012 Phillies staff.

The staff consists of Greg Gross, batting coach, Rich Dubee, pitching coach, Sam Perlozzo, 1st Base coach, Juan Samuel, 3rd base coach, Pete Mackanin, bench coach and Mick Billmeyer, bullpen coach.

Greg Gross – “GG” has spent nearly every year of his adult life in a baseball uniform beginning as a player in 1970. He reached the big leagues in 1973 and played for 17 seasons with the Astros, Cubs and Phillies. Of course GG was a member of the 1980 World Champion Phillies. When his playing career ended Gross started back at the bottom and worked his way through the coaching ranks. He began his coaching career at the high school level, moved to the Colorado Rockies organization and then back home to the Phillies in 2001. He is presently in his second stint with the Phillies at the big league level as the hitting coach after spending time at Batavia (A), Clearwater (A), Reading (AA) and Lehigh Valley (AAA).

Rich Dubee – Rich is probably the most well recognized of the Phils coaching staff due to his visibility during mound visits but also because he is the caretaker of what many consider the best pitching staff in baseball. Dubee is beginning his 30th season coaching in professional baseball almost exclusively as a pitching coach. He coached in the Kansas City, Montreal and Florida organizations before joining the Phillies in 2002. He worked at Clearwater (A) and Wilkes Barre (AAA) before being promoted to the Phillies in 2004 as pitching coach. He has held that position since.

Sam Perlozzo – Perlozzo is another baseball lifer. He begins his 40th season in professional baseball. He was drafted out of high school in 1972 and has never left. Sam was a player, mostly in the minor leagues, from 1973-1981. In 1982 he began his coaching career and has never left. He began his coaching career in the Mets minor league system serving from 1982-86. He was promoted to the big league level in 1987 working for the Mets, Reds, Mariners and Orioles before joining the Phillies for the 2009 season. He was the manager of the Orioles for parts of three seasons. Sam is presently the 1st base coach and is also responsible for baserunning.

Juan Samuel – Sammy is a Phillie fan favorite after spending the first 6 ½ seasons of his 16 year playing career, that included 7 teams, with the Phillies. As a Phillies player Juan was named The Sporting News Rookie of the Year in 1984. He became the first player in NL history to reach a quadruple double in each of his first 4 major league seasons. He holds the Phillies record for most SB in a season (72 in 1984) in the modern era (post-1900). For the decade of the 1980s, Sammy ranks 3rd among all Phillies in AVG (.263), OBP (.310), SLG % (.439), at-bats (3503), runs (523), hits (921), doubles (176), HR (100), RBI (413) and total bases (1539), trailing Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt and Von Hayes in each category. Sammy was inducted in to the Phillies Wall of Fame in 2008.

Sammy began his coaching career in 1999 with the Detroit Tigers before moving on to the OriolesHe returned to the Phillies for the 2011 season. He served as interim manager of the Orioles in 2010 and posted a 17-34 record. As well as being the 3rd base coach Sammy is also responsible for the outfielders.

Pete Mackanin – When it comes to coaching experience Pete has done it all. He has been a minor league instructor, a minor league coordinator, a minor league manager, a manager in the Dominican, Puerto Rican and Venezuelan Winter Leagues, a pro scout, a major league advanced scout and a major league coach with the Expos and Pirates and an interim manager of both the Pirates and Reds before joining the Phillies as bench coach for the 2009 season.

Mick Billmeyer – Mick is another coach who started his career as a minor league player and never left. Mick played in the minor leagues for 9 seasons but never made it to the big leagues. He learned the catching trade well and immediately moved in to a coaching position with the Angles organization in 1994 as the bullpen/workout coordinator. Mick joined the Phillies organization in 2000 as the minor league catching coordinator. He was promoted to minor league catching instructor in 2004 and again to bullpen coach in 2008. 

Tomorrow we will start our player previews with Roy “Doc” Halladay.

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