John Mallee was’t out of work for long. As expected.
The accomplished former Cubs hitting coach was not let go by the organization so much for his own failings or the failings of the hitters with whom he worked. Instead, the Cubs have made clear that they simply viewed the availability of Chili Davis as something of an opportunity that was too good to pass up.
Given Mallee’s track record of success and respect level around the game, he was a good bet to find a new gig quickly, and he did.
Today, the Phillies announced that new manager Gabe Kapler has brought Mallee on as his new hitting coach. And it sounds like Mallee had options:
I would like to thank all the teams that showed interest in me on my new journey. I chose the Philadelphia Phillies. Gifted young talent,
— John Mallee (@JohnMallee) November 10, 2017
For what it’s worth, and without knowing what other teams were involved, I do think Mallee made a good choice. That Phillies team has a lot of young talent percolating up toward the big league level, and moreover, the organization will have PLENTY of money to supplement in the coming years. If they are not a threat at the top of the NL East within two years, I’d be shocked.
In fact, you want a surprise bet right now? Take the Phillies before they start adding in free agency. They just have that look to me of a team like the Cubs before 2015 (before they added in free agency), or even the Brewers before last season. So much young talent that, if it all takes a small step forward at the same time, yields a dramatic improvement overall. And if they add a couple key, big-time additions later this winter? Watch out.