Beloved former Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel has returned to the team as hitting coach as the 3rd-place club looks for a spark in what has been a disappointing season.
Manuel, 75 years old, has replaced the fired John Mallee as the team looks for a guiding voice to improve their 17th-ranked offense, from which more was expected to go into the year.
Mallee was let go after not being able to coax enough runs out of a team that signed mega free agent Bryce Harper in the offense and that has other threats at the plate such as Rhys Hoskins and J.T. Realmuto.
Manuel, a beloved figure in Philadelphia after leading the Phillies to a 780-636 record, a World Series title, and five division pennants in nine years at the team’s helm, said that he felt an “obligation” to Phillies owner John S. Middleton to help out his beloved club in a time of stress.
The Phillies currently hold a 62-58 record, trailing the Braves in their division by 9 games and trailing the Cubs by 2 games for the final NL Wild Card slot.
Manuel’s first game saw the Phillies beat the Cubs by an 11-1 final, and the team hopes that his presence will inspire more offensive outbursts like Wednesday’s as they battle to qualify for the playoffs.