Phillies welcoming some popular guest instructors to spring training this year

The Phillies will be joined this spring training by some impressive alumni as their guest instructors.

Shane Victorino, Philadelphia Phillies
Shane Victorino, Philadelphia Phillies / Hannah Foslien/GettyImages
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Now that the football season is officially over, we can dive into the start of the baseball season and the start of 2024 spring training.

The Philadelphia Phillies are succeeding in getting the players and the fans excited for this year's spring training. We are getting new hats, new players, new preparation strategies, and new guest instructors!

Per MLB.com's Todd Zolecki, the Phillies recently announced that some familiar faces will be joining the team in Clearwater as guest instructors, including Shane Victorino, Juan Samuel, and Mike Lieberthal.

Shane Victorino hasn't joined Phillies spring training since 2019, so his return will get a very warm welcome. Fans will love to see him back in their favorite colors, and players will benefit from his presence and expertise.

Victorino, a former All-Star center fielder, will be an important mentor for current center fielder Johan Rojas. The Phillies decided this offseason that they will be giving Rojas another chance, so who better to learn from than the Flyin' Hawaiian himself? Victorino will be able to help Rojas with his fielding as well as his batting and prepare him to take a bigger role this season.

Rojas and fellow outfielders will also be able to work with former standout outfielder and Wall of Famer Juan Samuel. Sammy is returning for his second year as a guest instructor. Last year, Phillies ambassador Scott Palmer interviewed Samuel about joining spring training in Clearwater.

When asked how it feels to be back, Sammy spoke with a big smile.

"It feels great, tremendously, to be again wearing a Philly uni," he said. "Just getting back to the swing of things. ... Spending some time with the big club and seeing some of the guys that are still here when I was here, it's outstanding."

Rob Thomson and the players thoroughly enjoy Sammy's fun energy and sense of humor. Palmer asked manager Rob Thomson what it means to have him around.

"I love it, you know. Former Phillie, he's up on the wall out there," Thomson said. "He's a great man, I've known him for a long time. Great baseball man. The more people we have like that around, the better."

As for Wall of Fame catcher Mike Lieberthal, this will be his first year as a Phillies guest instructor. Lieberthal will be a great coaching addition, especially for the Phillies bats, as Lieberthal ended his time in the MLB with a .274 career batting average and 150 home runs.

Charlie Manuel will also make it to spring training, a goal he set for himself after suffering a stroke in September

Our favorite guy, former Phillies manager Charlie Manuel will once again be attending spring training with the team. This is big news because of the health scare Manuel dealt with last year. As we all know, Manuel suffered a stroke in September 2023. Since then, he has made a tremendous recovery and one of his goals was to be able to make it to Clearwater for spring training (subscription required) and be able to talk well enough to do so, per Matt Gelb at The Athletic.

Amazingly, Manuel is set to achieve that goal as the Phillies announced both he and Larry Bowa will be with the Phillies in Clearwater this year.

It's a stacked cast! The Phillies are excited and honored to welcome Victorino, Samuel, Lieberthal, Manuel and Bowa to spring training 2024 — all legendary figures in the Phillies organization who still have so much to offer to the team.

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