PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Former Phillies Manager Charlie Manuel previewed the 2016 team and expressed optimism that fans will be impressed with what they see on the field after two down and disappointing seasons.
Manuel, who led the team to a World Series title in 2008 and now serves as a senior advisor, told Chris Stigall on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT that he believes fans can expect a team that works hard and will get better as the year goes on.
“We got a lot of new players and we have some great talent,” Manuel said on Tuesday. “We have some talent that needs to be more developed but at the same time, we’re very energetic. We’ve been practicing hard and we’ve been doing things right and our players really love to come and play. Actually, once the season starts, I look for them to keep improving.”
Listen: Charlie Manuel with Chris Stigall on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT
He stated he sees may comparisons in this team to the teams he managed from 2005 to 2013.
“We have the most talent in our farm system that we’ve had in a long time and we’ve got some interesting guys. It’s going to be very interesting to the fans to watch them grow. I think our players will win the fans’ hearts, kind of like we did with our team for about five, six or seven years.”
Manuel said his primary focus now is on helping hitters stay positive and improve their swing.
“What I do is centered around hitting in, actually, the practices, what are we going to do during the day in the practice?” Manuel said. “What kind of fundamentals and situations that we can work on? Things like that. Most of the time, when I correspond with players, it’s having a conversation with them, more than likely, we’re definitely talking about hitting, their hitting. They tell me, they tell Mike Schmidt and Greg Luzinsky, guys likes that, how they feel, what they think of their swing and we’ll comment on it. Things like that. You get a conversation going and if we can say something that might help them or put them in a very positive mode or mood, that’s what we do.”