Phillies fire Joe Girardi

The Phillies decided to part ways with manager Joe Girardi on Friday.

Joe Girardi is out as the manager of the Philadelphia Phillies, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski announced Friday.

The Phillies are sitting at 22-29, having lost seven of their last nine games heading into Friday’s contest against the Angels. Girardi had been Philadelphia’s manager for the last three seasons, going 132-141, extending a playoff drought that dates to 2011.

He has served 14 seasons as a major league manager for the Marlins, Yankees and Phillies, winning the World Series with New York in 2009. Girardi has a 1,120-935 overall record during his career.

“We underperformed and that falls on me,” Girardi said on MLB Network Radio. “This is what happens. 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…I just pray that they, you know, get better and they get to the playoffs.”

The front office also dismissed coaching assistant Bobby Meacham, who had joined the staff with Girardi in 2020. Bench coach Rob Thomson will serve as the interim manager for the rest of the reason, while Mike Calitri was promoted from quality assurance to bench coach.

Thomson has been with the organization since the 2018 season. He coached under Girardi for 10 seasons in New York during what was a 28-year stint with the Yankees.

“I am extremely excited for this opportunity, and I appreciate the confidence Dave (Dombrowski) has shown in me,” Thomson said in a statement. “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.”

It will take a big turnaround for Thomson to get this season back on track. The Phillies are 12 games back of the Mets in the National League East and are in third place in the division. They are also 5.5 games back of the second NL Wild Card spot.

Offshore sportsbook BetOnline has Philadelphia priced at +900 to win the NL East, 20-1 to win the National League and 40-1 to win the World Series. The Phillies are -150 favorites to win their weekend series against the Angels, who have lost eight straight games.

Philadelphia has a $224 million payroll, headlined by 2021 NL MVP Bryce Harper and NL Cy Young Award runner-up Zack Wheeler. The Phillies also boast All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto along with free-agent acquisitions Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber.

The Los Angeles Dodgers are the +400 ‘chalk’ to win the World Series, followed closely by the Yankees (+600), Mets (+650) and Astros (+800). Philadelphia is sitting right in the middle of the pack, with 14 teams ahead of the Phillies in the futures market.

“I believe we have a talented group that can get back on track, and I am confident that Rob (Thomson), with his experience and familiarity with our club, is the right man to lead us going forward,” Dombrowski said.

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