PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — You often that Philadelphia is one of the toughest sports towns to play in. The fans and media demand a lot from their executives, coaches, and athletes.
But new Phillies manager Gabe Kapler says that’s not tough, that’s exactly how it should be.
“I would flip it,” Kapler told Al Morganti on Friday’s 94WIP Morning Show in Clearwater when he was asked about the “tough” Philly market.
“I would say it’s not tough. I would say this market has high expectations which are totally reasonable. If we are not playing with intensity — if we are not running the bases all out, if we’re not making sharp turns, if we’re not scoring from third base when we get into a position to do so early in the game, less than two outs — are we driving that guy in? Then the markets — the fans of Philadelphia, talk radio, writers, they’re going to be uncomfortable. They’re going to be upset and rightfully so. I don’t see that as tough, I see that as natural. And from my perspective, if we’re not meeting the bar we expect to be held accountable.”
Morganti mentioned the criticism Odubel Herrera received last year for not hustling at times.
“Odubel, have you guys seen this guy?” Kapler responded. “He’s been phenomenal in Spring Training. He is engaged, he is prepared, he has worked so hard in the outfield so far this Spring. That’s all I know of him, right now that’s what I’m looking forward to.”
Phillies principal owner John Middleton and slugger Rhys Hoskins joined the 94WIP Morning Show, as well, on Friday.