In a move that was somewhat expected to happen, the Philadelphia Phillies removed the interim tag from Ryne Sandberg's title, naming him manager of the Phillies for the next three years, with a club option for a fourth year.
Since taking over on August 16th for the fired Charlie Manuel, Sandberg has posted a 18-17 record as manager. He signed a 3-year contract Sunday with the option for a fourth year, allowing him to manage the team through 2016, and possibly 2017.
Sandberg was drafted in 1978 by the Phillies, and made his major league debut with the team in 1981. Sandberg was traded to the Cubs prior to the 1982 season, where he went on to establish himself as a Hall-of-Famer, accumulating more than 250 home runs and 1,000 RBI over 15 seasons.
In a post-game press conference, Sandberg was asked a number of questions regarding the team's future, since he will now play an integral role in what the Phillies do moving forward. When asked about the future of the catcher position, with Carlos Ruiz up for free agency, Sandberg responded:
"I think catching is a priority, and…a decision has to be made there. I know that Carlos has really come on in the last (month), and has really shown what he can do…that's a priority spot (moving forward)"
One less question that the Phillies and their fans will be asking heading into this offseason is who their manager will be next season. There are a number of important issues to address, including signing Carlos Ruiz or letting him go, but the manager situation has been resolved: Ryne Sandberg will manage your Philadelphia Phillies until at least 2016.
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