By CBS3 Staff


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It’s a new era of Phillies baseball. The Phillies introduced Joe Girardi as the organization’s 55th manager in franchise history during a press conference on Monday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park.

“I am truly excited to be here. This is a special place,” Girardi said, after being introduced by general manager Matt Klentak.

It’s the first time since 1952 that the Phillies hired a manager who has won a World Series. The Phillies signed Girardi to a three-year deal with a club option for 2023 last week.

“Now that our team is where it is, it’s time to win. No questions asked, it’s time to win. That lends itself to bring in a guy who has done that,” Klentak said.

Girardi’s résumé played a role in his hiring as Klentak said the front office was looking to hire someone with managerial experience. On top of Girardi, the Phillies also interviewed Buck Showalter and Dusty Baker.

“One of those guys really stood out and that was Joe Girardi,” Klentak said, adding that he “really connected with a lot of different people.”

In 10 seasons as manager of the New York Yankees, he won 910 regular-season games and held a 28-24 record in the postseason, including defeating the Phillies in the 2009 World Series. He also managed the Florida Marlins in 2006, winning the NL Manager of the Year but was fired after just one season.

Despite never having a losing record with the Yanks, New York did not renew Girardi’s contract after the 2017 season, replacing him with Aaron Boone.

He had been out of baseball for the past two seasons, serving as a baseball analyst for MLB Network and Fox Sports. Girardi said he was searching for signs to get back into baseball as manager, and those signs pointed to Philadelphia.

“I feel like this is part of who I am,” Girardi said.

Girardi said during Monday’s press conference that he wants to build a winning culture within the Phillies’ organization.

“I know the importance of winning here. This is what we all want to accomplish,” Girardi said. “We want to win here.”

A big talking point today was the balance of analytics and feel as a manager. Girardi said he’s an analytical guy, mentioning his “Binder Joe” nickname, but he also explained how he will find a middle ground to marry analytics with managerial feel.

“Because I’ve always done it. When I was a player and a manager, obviously there wasn’t as much available to us,” Girardi said. “I think it’s another great tool. There are so many tools to get the most out of players and we have to use that to the best of our ability.”

Most felt former manager Gabe Kapler was over reliant on analytics in his two seasons as manager, finishing with a 161-163 record.

Girardi’s emphasis on structure may be a welcomed change in the Phillies’ clubhouse. But, according to the manager, it’s not priority No. 1.

“The relationship with players is the most important thing I need to do. I need to win them over,” Girardi said.

“I’m excited to compete with him. He played for a long time. He brings that intense nature into his role and having that is so much better,” first baseman Rhys Hoskins said.

Girardi already has much on his plate. He needs to find new hitting and pitching coaches after John Mallee and Chris Young were let go. And the organization has several questions to answer this offseason: Who will fill out the starting rotation? What bullpen pieces will be added? Who will play third? Who will play center?

The Phillies have two top prospects they might be able to lean on in 2020 — third baseman Alec Bohm and pitcher Spencer Howard, but they are not locks. The front office will have to decide whether to throw “stupid money” at Houston Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole and Washington Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon as they are free agents after the World Series.

The Phillies have not reached the postseason since 2011.

CBS3’s Dan Koob contributed to this report.