Coaching Staff Coming Into Shape

The Phillies have been pretty studious about putting together their coaching staff under new manager Gabe Kapler. On Friday, they straightened out their pitching coach situation, naming former bullpen coach and assistant pitching coach Rick Kranitz as their pitching coach and Chris Young as their assistant pitching coach.

Kranitz had been hired shortly after Kapler was announced as the team’s manager, but his role wasn’t specified. With the hiring of Young, the Phillies announced that Kranitz would be the pitching coach with Young serving as his assistant. The Phillies also hired Jim Gott as their bullpen coach.

Young had been working as a scout with the Houston Astros and previously pitched in the minor leagues, with his last season being 2008 when he pitched for the independent Camden Riversharks.

There are multiple reports – the first being from Ken Rosenthal – that the Phillies will hire Rob Thomson, the former bench coach under Joe Giradi with the Yankees, to be Kapler’s bench coach. Thomson was a candidate to be the Yankees manager, but they have eliminated him from their search after narrowing their search down to either Hensley Meulens or Aaron Boone.

Thomson, 54, was the Yankees bench coach in 2008 and again from 2015-2017 and served as the third base coach from 2009-2014.

The Phillies also need to hire a first base coach. The rest of their coaching staff includes hitting coach John Mallee, assistant hitting coach Pedro Guerrero and third base coach Dusty Wathan.

Chuck Hixson

Chuck has a wide and varied background in covering sports both locally and nationally. Living in the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania, Chuck has the distinction of being the only person to have covered both the Lehigh Valley IronPigs and Lehigh Valley Phantoms in every season of their existence.

Chuck began covering sports in 1998 when he was the first program director and morning host at WTKZ-AM in Allentown, Pennsylvania when the station switched to an all sports format. Chuck produced the stations coverage of the Allentown Ambassadors baseball team, which played in the independent Northeast League.

From there, Chuck was the editor and writer of Pinstripes magazine, covering Phillies baseball. That led to Chuck founding Philly Baseball Insider in 2003.

Chuck has done freelance work for national entities such as USA TODAY, CBS, FOX Sports, Washington Times and others.

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