First 3 moves Phillies need to make in 2020-21 offseason

Erik Neander of the Tampa Bay Rays (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
Erik Neander of the Tampa Bay Rays (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Erik Neander of the Tampa Bay Rays (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) /

1. Address front office and coaching vacancies

The Philadelphia Phillies’ South Philadelphia sports complex neighbor — the Philadelphia 76ers of the National Basketball Association — made a significant front office move on Wednesday, hiring former Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey on a multi-year deal to run their basketball operations.

It seems as though the Phillies could use a “splash” of their own. Not only is their general manager position vacant after Matt Klentak stepped down following the 2020 season, but so is two positions on manager Joe Girardi’s staff — pitching coach and bullpen coach. The latter two recently became open following the retirement of Bryan Price after one year in red pinstripes, and the parting ways with Jim Gott after three.

The Phillies have several important player decisions to make over the coming months to improve their club for the 2021 season — J.T. Realmuto and Didi Gregorius to name a few. While Ned Rice currently serves as interim general manager, the Phillies really need a permanent solution.

If Rice is their long-term guy, he should be named as such. A more Morey-esque hire for the Phillies would be Erik Neander, Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations/General Manager for the American League champion Tampa Bay Rays. Two-time World Series champion Dave Dombrowski is reportedly interested to replace Klentak; J.J. Picollo is another name to watch.

As for Girardi, he will likely have no trouble replacing both Price and Gott. But, having the positions filled could influence a free agent, particularly a pitcher, to sign with the Phillies over another club.

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