There haven’t yet been any talks between the Phillies and manager Rob Thomson about a contract extension, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski told reporters (including the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Alex Coffey) this week. Thomson was named interim manager during the 2022 season after Joe Girardi was fired, and after the Phillies’ run to the World Series, Thomson was given a new two-year pact as the club’s new full-time skipper. No club options were attached to the deal, so the 60-year-old Thomson is only locked up through the 2024 campaign.
Despite the relative lack of contractual stability, it doesn’t appear as though Thomson is going anywhere, given how successful the Fightins have been under his watch. With still plenty of time left for an extension to be negotiated, it wouldn’t at all be surprising to see a new contract for Thomson announced prior to Opening Day. Though Thomson had been planning to retire from baseball heading into the 2022 season, his first run as a big league manager has re-energized his spirits. “I love this city, this organization, this team. I have never had as much fun in my life as I have the last couple of years. So yeah, I can envision [managing beyond 2024,” Thomson told Coffey and company.
More on other dugout situations around baseball….
- The Guardians are set to interview Craig Counsell after being granted permission by the Brewers earlier this week, creating speculation that the Guards might be able to find another experienced, successful manager to replace Terry Francona. However, a Counsell/Cleveland pairing looks to be “a long shot,” as a source tells Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Pluto feels Counsell will ultimately end up staying in Milwaukee, though he thinks “the Guardians should go hard after Counsell” by giving him a deal akin to Francona’s past status as the highest-paid manager in baseball. Of course, this wouldn’t stop the Brewers from also offering Counsell a raise, or the deep-pocketed Mets (who are also pursuing Counsell) from going overboard in a bidding war.
- The Orioles’ coaching changes earlier this week could be “akin to the principal becoming the headmaster of a school and a new principal coming in beneath him to handle the day to day,” The Baltimore Banner’s Jon Meoli writes. Chris Holt will remain the club’s director of pitching, even if he will no longer be acting as the Orioles’ pitching coach and quite so intimately involved in game-day operations. Odds are that the Orioles will fill the pitching coach role from within, though Meoli feels an outside hire would represent some alteration in Baltimore’s approach in managing and developing their hurlers.