UPDATE (2:37 p.m.): The Phillies have agreed to a deal with Larry Bowa to become the bench coach in 2014. The Phillies have also brought back former bench coach Pete Mackanin as the third-base coach. Steve Henderson will be returning as hitting coach, however assistant Wally Joyner has declined to return.
It appears that one of the Phillies offseason wish list items will be getting crossed off sooner rather than later.
During the final days of his tryout as Phillies manager, Ryne Sandberg was seen talking to Larry Bowa on the field at Citizens Bank Park. When Sandberg was officially handed the job, the speculation soared. Could Bowa find his way back to the field with the Phillies.
Sure enough, that appears to be happening. According to Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly, the Phillies and Bowa may be close to an agreement on a deal to make Bowa the team’s bench coach.
Bowa served as manager of the Phillies from 2001 to 2004 and was also a coach for the Phillies in the 1990s. He played 12 seasons with the Phillies in the 70s and 80s before being traded. That’s where Sandberg and Bowa cross paths. They were both a part of a trade with the Chicago Cubs that started Sandberg’s Hall-of-Fame career.
Now the two could be reunited as part of a coaching staff. Bowa last coached in 2010 with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Since 2011, he has served as an analyst on MLB Network and also on the Phillies Post-Game Show on PHL17.
The Phillies have also already let go pitching coach Rich Dubee and catching instructor Mick Billmeyer.