Phillies turn to Kapler as next man­ager

Calgary Herald - - SPORTS - ROB MAADDI The As­so­ci­ated Press

The Philadel­phia Phillies went out­side the or­ga­ni­za­tion and per­haps out­side the box to get a new man­ager.

For­mer ma­jor-league out­fielder Gabe Kapler was hired Mon­day, com­plet­ing a search that lasted one month.

“I’m equal parts hon­oured, hum­bled and ex­cited by the op­por­tu­nity with the Phillies, an elite fran­chise in a city rich in his­tory, tra­di­tion, sports ex­cel­lence and with amaz­ingly pas­sion­ate fans,” Kapler said. “I be­lieve there is no bet­ter place to build a win­ning en­vi­ron­ment and I take that task very se­ri­ously.”

Kapler has served as direc­tor of player de­vel­op­ment for the Los An­ge­les Dodgers since 2014. Kapler will be in­tro­duced af­ter the World Se­ries ends with Los An­ge­les trail­ing the Hous­ton Astros 3-2 go­ing into Tues­day’s Game 6.

The 42-year-old Kapler re­places Pete Mack­anin, who moved into a front-of­fice po­si­tion. Kapler bat­ted .268 with 82 homers and 386 RBIs over 12 sea­sons with six teams be­tween 1998-2010. He had no pre­vi­ous ties to the Phillies.

“Gabe has a track record of lead­er­ship, win­ning, pro­gres­sive think­ing and work­ing with young play­ers and we fully be­lieve that he is the right per­son to guide this or­ga­ni­za­tion into the fu­ture,” gen­eral man­ager Matt Klen­tak said.

That “pro­gres­sive” think­ing in­cludes a fond­ness for analytics and sports science, two im­por­tant ar­eas for Philadel­phia’s man­age­ment group. Klen­tak said he wanted a man­ager with a new voice and new style to lead the Phillies into con­tention. They fin­ished 66-96, but a tal­ented core of young play­ers im­proved in the sec­ond half.

Kapler’s only man­age­rial ex­pe­ri­ence came in 2007 when he took a sea­son off from play­ing to lead Bos­ton’s sin­gle-A af­fil­i­ate. He also coached Is­rael dur­ing 2013 World Base­ball Clas­sic qual­i­fy­ing.

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