Phillies manager search expands to include two new names

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PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 30: Brandon Belt #9 celebrates his solo home run with Phil Nevin #16 of the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 30, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 30: Brandon Belt #9 celebrates his solo home run with Phil Nevin #16 of the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 30, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /
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The Phillies manager search continues to expand with two new names either set to be interviewed or already interviewing for the position.

The Phillies manager search is really starting to get into swing now with more and more external candidates being brought in. After interviewing three internal candidates last week, Chip Hale interviewed earlier this week and Mickey Callaway is set to interview soon with the Indians now out of playoff contention.

Todd Zolecki of MLB.com added two new names to the fray, reporting that Giants third base coach Phil Nevin interviewed for the job. In addition, Zolecki says Dodgers player development director Gabe Kapler has either already interviewed or will interview in the near future.

President Andy MacPhail said the team would like to have the position filled by the GM meetings next month, so these interviews should happen fairly soon.

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Nevin joined San Francisco’s coaching staff last November after spending several years managing in the minors. He managed the independent Orange County Flyers in 2009, spent four seasons managing in Detroit’s farm system between 2010 and 2013, then managed the Giants’ Triple-A affiliate, the Reno Aces, from 2014 through 2016 before joining the major-league staff.

Kepler is a more unorthodox candidate with little managerial experience under his belt. He spent some time managing in A-ball during a brief retirement (although he almost was hired in 2015 to be the Dodgers manager) but has more experience in the front office. Zolecki says he is a “protégé” of Andrew Friedman, who helped construct the National League’s top team this year that is on their way to the World Series. Being connected to Freidman is certainly a strong part of his resumé.

Kepler is certainly a forward-thinking candidate with a strong inclination towards analytics, nutrition, and fitness (the latter two of which should be a concern for everyone) which seems to be a key component of what the team wants for their next manager.

Next: Should the Phillies trade Freddy Galvis?

As more and more candidates emerge, it may be hard to keep track of everyone being brought in. Soon enough, the team will decide and the first big question of the offseason will be answered.

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