Philadelphia Phillies

Stadium: Citizens Bank Park | Manager: Ryne Sandberg
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Tue Mar 3
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Wed Mar 4
at NYY
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Thu Mar 5
at HOU
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Sat Mar 7
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at TB
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Mon Mar 9
at BAL
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Thu Mar 12
at DET
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Fri Mar 13


New York68-7479-83
Phillies' Ryan Howard working on his swing
by Chris Cwik |

Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard is working on his swing, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer

Howard has spent time working with Charlie Manuel during camp. Manuel was brought in as spring training hitting instructor. Manager Ryan Sandberg has noticed the change in Howard's approach already. "As far as making some adjustments there, to really zone in to something that can really be productive for him and a little bit more consistent," Sandberg said. "I think there has been a little tweaking going on there."

Howard apparently has looked different at the plate. His stance has been described as "looser" and his hands are much lower when he starts his swing. 

The 35-year-old hit .223/.310/.380 over 569 at-bats last year. 

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Blue Jays might be option for Papelbon after Brewers sign K-Rod
by Michael Hurcomb |

With the news the Brewers are bringing back closer Francisco Rodriguez, Milwaukee trading for Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon is probably no longer on the table. Although, Papelbon doesn't seem disappointed he won't be dealt to Milwaukee.

“No, not really,” Papelbon said, per “I’m glad (Rodriguez) signed. I think he’s a talent that needs to be in Major League Baseball.

“I would have gone there if it was the right thing for me and if the Phillies felt it was the right thing for them, but obviously that wasn’t the case.”

The Phillies have also talked to the Blue Jays about a trade involving Papelbon, but the veteran closer would have to waive his no-trade clause to accept a deal to Toronto.

“Yes, Toronto, interests me -- if it interests (Phillies general manager) Ruben (Amaro),” he said. “I know some of the guys on their coaching staff. They’re a good team. If Ruben can do a deal with them, I’d be interested.”

While Papelbon would welcome a trade to a contender, if he stays with Philadelphia, he appears optimistic about the team's chances in 2015.

“If we come out and play the baseball we’re capable of playing then I plan on being right here and righting the ship here,” he said. “I want to right the ship here more than I want to leave. I’ll get more satisfaction turning this thing around and winning here than going somewhere else.

“My storybook ending here is sneaking into the wild card and getting hot in the playoffs with these Phillies.”

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Phillies' Domonic Brown working with Mike Schmidt during camp
by Chris Cwik |

Phillies outfielder Domonic Brown is looking to return to form in 2015, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer

In order to do that, Brown has been working with former Phillies third baseman Mike Schmidt during camp. Schmidt is hoping to get Brown to cut down on his uppercut swing, but he's also hoping to help the outfielder mentally. "I hope to get [Brown] thinking positive again," Schmidt said. Schmidt mentioned that he would love to see Brown take home the comeback player of the year award when the season ends.

Brown admits his swing can lead to issues when he's off, but feels confident Schmidt can get him back on the right track. "When it's right, it's right. But when it's not, you need a guy who has that nice downhill swing to get you back right, and Mike Schmidt has that."

The 27-year-old Brown hit .235/.285/.349 over 473 at-bats last year. 

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Phillies' Sandberg impressed with Ryan Howard early on in camp
by Michael Hurcomb |

Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said Wednesday he has been impressed with veteran first baseman Ryan Howard following the team's first two full-squad workouts, per

"Ryno looks like, his body looks like right now, he's going to allow himself to be more productive," Sandberg said. "Just running the bases he looks better, a much better chance of scoring from second base. Much better getting to the cutoff spots playing first base. There should be more range there with the way that he looks from the waist down."

Howard has declined to talk to reporters since arriving for camp Monday. Some feel he could be playing with a chip on his shoulder after an interesting offseason, which included settling a nasty legal battle with his family, dealing with trade rumors and general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. saying the Phillies would be better off without him.

"He doesn't act like he has a chip on his shoulder," Sandberg said. "He acts like he's a teammate here and he's a veteran guy helping the young players. So I like the attitude and the fact that he's getting after it and doing extra work with Charlie [Manuel], but with [Larry] Bowa in the mornings and sometimes afterwards on the defensive side of things. That'll go a long way with getting the most out of Ryno, really getting back to the ability and where he needs to be on the field."

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Phillies SP Cliff Lee (elbow) faces hitters for first time since late July
by Igor Mello |

On Wednesday, Phillies starting pitcher Cliff Lee (elbow) threw to hitters for the first time since his last start on July 31. According to the Philadelphia Daily News, the veteran left-handed pitcher declared himself ready to pitch when the exhibition season starts next week, though that may be up to the medical staff.

"Yeah, I think so," Lee said. "But I don't know what the schedule says. I know we discussed just easing into it, making sure we don’t do anything stupid early. I had two days in between bullpens, where everyone else had a day. (We're just) trying to make sure you're better safe than sorry early. But everything feels good."

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2014 Team Leaders
AVGBen Revere , CF.306
HRMarlon Byrd , RF25
RBIRyan Howard , 1B95
OBPChase Utley , 2B.339
SLGMarlon Byrd , RF.445
RJimmy Rollins , SS78
SBBen Revere , CF49
WKyle Kendrick , SP10
ERACole Hamels , SP2.46
WHIPCole Hamels , SP1.15
KCole Hamels , SP198
SVJonathan Papelbon , RP39
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