The Phillies have already found their manager for the next three years (or so they hope) in Ryne Sandberg, but there was more work to be done. Earlier today, the team announced that longtime pitching coach Rich Dubee will not have his contract renewed and that Paul Fournier will be the team's new Major League strength and conditioning coordinator. Fournier had served the same role in the Phils' minor league system and has also been a high-ranking conditioning coach for the Marlins and Expos. Here's some more on Phillies-related news…
- Carlos Ruiz hopes to return to Philadelphia in 2014 and finish his career with the Phillies, writes Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News. GM Ruben Amaro Jr. wouldn't comment as to whether or not he'd begun discussions with Ruiz's agent, Marc Kilgman, but the Phillies are known to be prioritizing catching help this offseason.
- Amaro admitted to reporters, including MLB.com's Todd Zolecki, that he feels pressure to get the Phillies back to their winning ways. “I always feel under the gun,” Amaro said. “I put myself under the gun. I don’t listen to a lot of it. But listen, I’m the GM of the club, so I fully expect to take heat for it. I’m the one making the decisions on player personnel. I’m accountable for the things that have happened. I didn’t have a very good year; our team didn’t have a very good year."
- The GM went on to say that while they'd like to fill the right field hole with a quality right-handed hitter, they could go out and get a left-handed batter instead if that's what's out there. Amaro doesn't feel Darin Ruf is an everyday option in right field.
- Amaro reiterated his desire to see Roy Halladay back with the Phillies but before the two sides can try and work out a risk-controlled deal, the pitcher may want to see if the Phillies will be in a position to contend before re-signing.
- Because of missteps in player evaluations in recent years, Amaro says that they will "build more analytics" into the gameplan going forward, Zolecki writes.
Steve Adams contributed to this post.