PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Phillies Manager Ryne Sandberg joined Chris Stigall Monday on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT to preview the upcoming 2014 season and addressed some lingering concerns from Spring Training.
Click link below to listen to the podcast …
Sandberg said that, despite other reports, he has no outstanding issues with shortstop Jimmy Rollins.
“I did have a conversation that I wanted to have with Jimmy about a comment that was made, and that was all cleared up in a very short conversation with him. That’s all behind us. Things are coming together very good … we’re heading in the right direction,” he said.
Sandberg went on to say that he is taking steps to change the environment of the clubhouse in order to get players re-focused on the task in front of them.
“I’m trying to form a team together as a group. As far as the culture goes and the daily expectations, I expect all the players to be at the ballpark at a certain time … I expect them to all be in uniform for the national anthem and for the first pitch. That’s where the things start … I’ve set the tone for that, and that’s all part of the culture that we’re going to work at the game of baseball, and they’re going to work to be the best players they can be,” Sandberg explained.
And Sandberg said he is expecting big things from the veteran leaders on the team: Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz.
“These guys, I appreciate as being veteran players. I’ve talked with them, and they know what my expectations of them are and basically what their roles on the team are. That’s the respect that they get and the respect that I give them is that I expect them to do their part, the bigger part, and allow … younger players to do their part and relax and just play,” he said.
Sandberg also gave an update on starting pitcher Cole Hamels, saying he expects Hamels to be back in the rotation sooner rather than later.
“Cole is throwing the ball well. He’s geared and ready to pitch in a game later this week … We’ve been monitoring him. We haven’t been pushing him … We’re looking forward to having him some time in April. There is no set timetable,” he said.