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Monday, September 27, 2010

Remember Milt Thompson?

He waz the Phillies' hitting coach at the start of the year (and for many years prior to that). With the team in a slump, the Phillies fired him on July 23.

The Phillies are 44-17 since that time. Up until that time, they were 49-46.

Has Greg Gross, Thompson's replacement, been a Hall of Fame hitting coach since that time? Has he simply coached better than Thompson did? Or, is it a pure coincidence, in light of a) how well the Phillies have pitched during the season, b) the fact that hitters can be streaky and, of course, c) the Phillies were beset with injuries.

I think that Thompson was a victim of circumstances. After all, he's the same guy who served as hitting coach when the offense was torrid in '07, '08 and '09, so it stands to reason that while he might not have gotten credit for the great offense of those teams, he shouldn't get the blame for the tepid offense of the first two thirds of the 2010 season. Yet, he was singled out, and now he's gone.

And the Phillies might go very far this post-season.

If they do, everyone should remember Milt Thompson, and, if they win the World Series, the Phillies should give him a ring. Whether he'll take it or not is another story (although he did show up for Old-Timers' weekend, showing a lot of grace), but he'll have deserved it.


Blogger Michael said...

I think you are taking it much more personally that he is. Coaches always get less credit and more blame than necessary. He's been around the block he knows somebody had to take the fall.

In terms of quality of coaching, sometimes you just need a new set of eyes.

His years of success will get him a job somewhere else.

2:30 PM  

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