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By Steve Tawa

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel and members of the team’s front office got in the holiday spirit today by delivering and dishing food — along with some baseball talk — at a homeless shelter near 9th and Spring Garden Streets.

More than a few of the guests who lined up for food at “Our Brother’s Place,” 9th and Hamilton Streets, were eager to be able to chat with Charlie Manuel.

“They tell you who to sign, where they should hit in the order, and ask me how good a guy is going to be,” Manuel tells KYW Newsradio.  “And I say, ‘Yeah, that’s right, you got it.’ ”

Phillies’ president David Montgomery brought a $10,000 check to Father Domenic Rossi, executive director of Bethesda Project, which has 15 locations in the city that help more than 7,000 people a year.

“The Phillies are just great,” Father Rossi said today.  “They’re long-term advocates for us.  They’ve opened up their doors, their hearts — and their checkbooks — over these last years.”

One of the guests, George Freeman, noted that  spring training isn’t far off, after a rough season last year when the Phillies faltered at the end.

“OK, we didn’t win the World Series,” Freeman says, “but they put one of the best products in baseball on the field, day in and day out.”

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