The Phillies have rounded out their major-league coaching staff, hiring Jose Flores to serve as the team’s first base coach.
The final piece of Gabe Kapler’s coaching staff has been added, as the Phillies have hired 46-year-old Jose Flores to be their first base coach. Flores’s duties will also include being the infield and baserunning coach. This was the last position left open with several other coaches being hired in the last month and a half.
This is Flores’ first job in the major-leagues. Prior to this, he was serving as the minor-league infield coordinator for the Cubs. He also spent time as the manager for the Puerto Rican national team.
The news came out a few days ago that the team was going with an external candidate for the position. Candidates were interviewed this week at the Winter Meetings, and we now know it was Flores who impressed the team the most.
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That news also meant that Juan Samuel was not going to be retained from last year’s coaching staff. He was the last coach left in limbo as other coaches found other jobs either inside or outside the organization. Pete Mackanin and Larry Bowa both have roles in the front office while Mickey Morandini is a club ambassador. Bob McClure was hired by the Twins as their minor-league pitching coordinator while Matt Stairs is the Padres’ new hitting coach.
The only coach on this year’s staff left over from last year is Rick Kranitz, who will be the pitching coach this season. He previously served under McClure as the assistant pitching coach.
Dusty Wathan is the only other coach to come from within the organization. The longtime minor-league manager will be the third base coach next season. He did spend some time at the end of the past two seasons as an extra coach once the minor-league season ended.
Besides new manager Gabe Kapler, the new faces in the clubhouse now are Flores, hitting coach John Mallee, assistant hitting coach Pedro Guerrero, bench coach Rob Thomson, and bullpen coach Jim Gott.