Phillies

Bryce Harper rumors: Phillies might not have as much competition as assumed

Bryce Harper rumors: Phillies might not have as much competition as assumed

CARLSBAD, Calif. — Notes, quotes and observations as baseball’s annual general managers meetings come to a close and what promises to be a busy, newsy Phillies offseason heats up.

Will Carlos Santana be traded?

The latest on trade talks involving Cesar Hernandez and Maikel Franco.

Will the Phillies land the reliever they wanted at the trade deadline?

The general consensus at the GM meetings had the Phillies as favorites to land Bryce Harper. The Phils have the interest and the money and the competition for Harper might not be as fierce as expected with the Dodgers and Cubs watching payroll, the Giants still formulating an offseason plan, and the Yankees giving off vibes that they will not pursue the player. Of course, everything is fluid at this time of year and things can change with one phone call.

Harper's agent, Scott Boras, scoffed at reports saying the Yankees would sit out the Harper sweepstakes.

“I remember they put out that same thing about Mark Teixeira in October or November (2008),” Boras said. “And if I were them, I'd put that out, too. Look, this is a submarine race, not a regatta. You do not want other teams knowing you're interested in a generational player.”

Teixeira signed an eight-year, $180 million contract with the Yankees before the 2009 season.

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At the Yard podcast: Early free-agent signings and disappointing prospects

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At the Yard podcast: Early free-agent signings and disappointing prospects

How will Yasmani Grandal's contract affect J.T. Realmuto's? Why did Tuesday's roster moves represent such massive disappointment? Jim Salisbury and Corey Seidman discuss on the latest At the Yard podcast.

• Grandal vs. Realmuto

• Phils have a new hitting coach

• Reassessing the third base market

• Will Rendon beat Arenado's number?

• Phillies left 2 massive busts unprotected in Rule 5 draft ... and you might not want to hear the names of who they passed on

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Phillies hire Joe Dillon as hitting coach

Phillies hire Joe Dillon as hitting coach

Joe Dillon, the clear focus of the Phillies' search for a new hitting coach, has been hired to join Joe Girardi's staff.

The former Nationals assistant hitting coach has earned recognition as an ascending coach and his resume was only bolstered by Washington's championship season.

For two seasons in Washington, Dillon was the assistant to hitting coach Kevin Long, who spent seven seasons as Girardi's hitting coach with the Yankees. 

The relationship between Dillon and Long dates back to Dillon's playing days when Long was one of his hitting coaches. The two worked together during offseasons, and Long later brought him aboard when he got the Nationals hitting coach job in 2018.

Prior to joining the Nats, Dillon was the Marlins' minor league hitting coordinator from 2015-17.

Dillon, 44, played in the majors with the Marlins, Brewers and Rays. He has gained recognition around the game for marrying new-age science with old-school principles in coaching hitters. Long, in fact, has called Dillon “the best assistant hitting coach in the baseball.”

Dillon succeeds Charlie Manuel, who assumed the hitting coach position on a temporary basis when the Phillies fired John Mallee in August.

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