The Philadelphia Phillies baseball team releases that they fired manager Joe Girardi, as announced by president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski this Friday.
This decision was decided after the Phillies lost seven of their past nine games, leaving them at a 22-29 start. They now sit in third place in the National League East, 12 games behind the New York Mets
“It has been a frustrating season for us up until this point, as we feel that our club has not played up to its capabilities. While all of us share the responsibility for the shortcomings, I felt that a change was needed and that a new voice in the clubhouse would give us the best chance to turn things around,” Dombrowski said in a statement.
After the Phillies’ announcement, Girardi continued his regular appearance on Sirius XM’s MLB Network Radio, saying “I think there’s a number of reasons we didn’t win,” noting struggles in the bullpen and some slow offensive starts among the problems.
“I think you can overcome, sometimes, one thing, maybe even two, but sometimes when it’s more than that, I think it’s somewhat difficult,” Girardi said. “… I just pray that they, you know, get better and they get to the playoffs.”
Girardi, 57, served as Phillies manager for the past three seasons, going 132-141 as Philadelphia continues to seek its first playoff appearance since 2011.
On top of firing Girardi, the Phillies also dismissed assistant Bobby Meacham, who had joined the team in 2020 along with Girardi.
Bench coach Rob Thomson will serve in the place of Girardi as the team’s manager for the rest of the season, while quality assurance coach Mike Calitri was promoted to bench coach.
“I believe we have a talented group that can get back on track, and I am confident that Rob, with his experience and familiarity with our club, is the right man to lead us going forward,” Dombrowski said.
Thomson has been with the Phillies since the 2018 season. He previously spent 28 years in the Yankees organization, including 10 seasons when Girardi served as manager from 2008 to 2017.
Newly appointed manger, Rob Thompson said, “I am extremely excited for this opportunity and I appreciate the confidence Dave has shown in me. Having said that, this is an emotional day for me, having worked so closely with Joe for so many years. This has been my home now for the last five years and I care deeply about this franchise, this city, our players, our coaches, our staff and our fans. I am ready to lead this team and look forward to getting to work and turning this around.”
Thomson’s first game Friday will be against a Los Angeles Angels team that has lost eight straight games overall and six straight on the road.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.