Results tagged ‘ team meeting ’

Stop Goofing Off: Amaro and Manuel Call Team Meeting

Charlie Manuel, Ruben Amaro, Jr.This is a huge homestand for the Phillies. Ruben Amaro Jr. said as much Friday.

So when Amaro and his fellow front office executives witnessed Cliff Lee and others screwing around during Jonathan Pettibone‘s in-game interview Saturday in an ugly 13-4 blowout loss to the Braves, they decided to call a team meeting.

Read about the meeting here.

While I don’t think goofing on Pettibone had anything to do with the blowout loss Saturday and while I believe players need ways to break up the monotony of a grueling 162-game schedule, I also get that appearances matter. The season is on the line. You’re losing to the Braves in a big series. Now might not be the time to stick a paper cup on Pettibone’s head with a wad of gum. But let’s be honest about this: none of this happens if the team is winning. If the Phillies are winning, bloggers are making .gifs from Pettibone’s interview and having fun with it. (They probably still will.) The front office probably doesn’t care. The manager doesn’t care. It might be even discussed in postgame interviews. (Those wacky Phillies are having so much fun out there!) Nobody would have thought twice about it. But the team is losing so things are looked at differently. That’s the way it goes.

If the Phillies get on a roll this will be forgotten pretty quickly. If they lose and there is a fire sale, this will be just another low point to the season.

Stay tuned …

Time for a Talk

So what was Charlie Manuel‘s tipping point?

“Sitting there watching that game,” he snapped.

Manuel called a team meeting following last night’s brutal 10-6 loss to the Mets.

Read the story here.

Manuel was asked following Tuesday’s loss why he had not spoken to his team yet. He said he did not know what to say. Well, he found the words last night.

People outside the team always want the manager to hold team meetings. They love the idea of him storming into the clubhouse, flipping the postgame spread and throwing chairs against the wall. Only if you’re the manager and you do that too often (or do that even once) the players start looking at you as a buffoon. Manuel picks his spots carefully, and he has a good track record with team meetings.

Here are the team meetings I found after doing a quick search and the immediate and long term response (I’m sure there a few meetings I missed, but this should give you the gist):

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The Boiling Point


Thumbnail image for manuel looks on.jpgCharlie Manuel
has had a knack for timing his team meetings/blow ups for maximum impact.

Well, at least he has with the two that come to mind.

He called a pregame meeting April 21, 2007, in Cincinnati, a night after Tom Gordon blew the game in a 2-1 loss to the Reds in 10 innings. It dropped the Phillies to 4-11, which was the worst record in baseball. A lot of people talked during that meeting. Wes Helms compared it to a family gathering for Thanksgiving Day dinner. Cole Hamels then went out and struck out 15 in nine innings as the Phillies finished the season 85-62 for the best record in the National League.

He blew up in the visitor’s dugout in Miami on May 1, 2006, after the Phillies dropped two of three to the Pirates before the Phillies went to Florida, where Dontrelle Willis was sticking it up the Phillies’ keisters through four innings. The Phillies had finished April at 10-14 and 5-10 at home and Manuel had seen enough of the team’s lackadaisical play. The Phillies came back to beat Willis to jumpstart a nine-game winning streak. The Phillies finished the season 75-63, the fourth-best record in the National League.

Maybe last night’s meeting in Toronto will work like those worked. Maybe it won’t.

But clearly Manuel had wanted to say something for a while. The team is simply playing very poorly right now. It doesn’t help that the team has been without Raul Ibanez, Brett Myers, Brad Lidge, Scott Eyre and Clay Condrey. But that doesn’t explain the mental errors, which seemed to be killing Manuel as much as anything.

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