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Could Larry Bowa be on his way back to Philly?

Sep 19, 2013, 2:30 PM EDT

larry bowa

Former Phillies infielder and manager Larry Bowa was at Citizens Bank Park for a visit yesterday. CSNPhilly’s Jim Salisbury notes that there is a chance he could be back on a more permanent basis:

Bowa was a star player, a World Series-winning player, a coach and manager with the club. After all these years, he remains a Phillie at heart. And he has a close relationship with Sandberg, having mentored him when they were teammates in the Chicago Cubs’ infield. Could Bowa, still spry with his 68th birthday approaching in December, end up on Sandberg’s staff?

Nothing is guaranteed. But it’s possible. It has been talked about in the organization.

Bowa’s reputation is as a tough guy who pounds fundamentals and angers veterans. This was pretty bad when he was at the helm of a veteran-laden Phillies team in the early-to-mid 2000s. Guys like Jimmy Rollins, Bobby Abreu, Mike Lieberthal, Jim Thome and Pat Burrell were not exactly enamored with Bowa’s firm hand.

But on a Philly team in transition? With Bow not in command but, rather, as a lieutenant? If Ryne Sandberg needs a bad cop, there are many worse choices.

  1. rickdobrydney - Sep 19, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Love Bowa —he was the one who got on Cano’s butt when he would pull some lazy crap with the Yankees —-

  2. Innocent Bystander - Sep 19, 2013 at 3:21 PM

    Get the band back together. Bowa and Sandberg were the 2 the Phils traded as players to the Cubs for Ivan DeJesus.

    • Francisco (FC) - Sep 19, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      Hey let’s make it a trio and see if you can get Mike Schmidt off his golf course and join the team as the Hitting Instructor, seeing how often that position rotates, Mike will last maybe a year or two and then quit.

  3. pkswally024 - Sep 19, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    Don’t forgot the Rolen fiasco. That angers me greatly to this day.

    • xmatt0926x - Sep 19, 2013 at 5:26 PM

      Angry at Bowa or Rolen? Bowa was a bad manager in San Diego and Philly, but don’t ut the Rolen mess on him. Bowa was on the Mike Missanelli radio show about 2 years ago and said that he and Rolen patched things up and that Rolen admitted to him that he NEVER intended to sign back with the Phillies.

      If you recall, there were reports from Rolen friends back then that also stated that they knew Rolen wanted to go play in the midwest where he was from. Nothing wrong with that at all, but he played that situation out as Bowa and the fans made him leave. He never intended to stay all along and played that whole situation like a master to come out looking like the victim.

      • xmatt0926x - Sep 19, 2013 at 5:33 PM

        Just to clarify, he was a bad manager in the sense that he ha the same problems in Philly that he had way back when in San Diego. He eventually grated on his players until they were in near revolt. That’s not a coincidence.

        He apparently just can’t relate to players who may not be the old school grinder that he is. What’s the irony of that? Bowa was one of the players who absolutely despised Dallas Green as manager and led a clubhouse revolt in 1980 when Dallas was constantly yelling and screaming at what appeared to be an underachieving team up to that point.

      • badintent - Sep 20, 2013 at 1:17 AM

        The apple does fall near the tree with Green and Bowa. Both needed Prozac 24/7 . Both were jerks to the max degree. Dallas was big guy but Bowa had little man, little dick disease since age 5.

      • ryanrockzzz - Sep 20, 2013 at 7:40 AM

        Yes but the Phillies were to blame as well organizationally. They took a floundering team and placed every hope for the future on Rolen’s shoulders. He wasn’t ready for it, and wasn’t really the right personality for it either. I think that pressure, coupled with the media scrutiny it lead to, drove the final nail in the coffin for him. It’s a shame he got stuck on this team during the crap years with no payroll and players like Ricky Otero and Desi Relaford. I think things would have been a little different had he come along 3-4 years later.

  4. leerosenthall - Sep 19, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    I loved Bowa as a player, but as a manager? I don’t know. Do we really want a return to that?

  5. eagles512 - Sep 19, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    He and Rollins were actually very close. Not quite with Burrell.

  6. hockeyfan28 - Sep 19, 2013 at 6:18 PM

    More then anything they need badly to get younger they could bring in Tony Larussa and still finish 3rd or 4th in the division

  7. kardshark1 - Sep 19, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    Wow. Never realized just how bad Larry Bowa was as a manager and player. A career 71 OPS+ with really bad defense? Ouch. But his WTW (Will to Win) was 3 million above league average, so that’s why he’s considered a “star”.

    And a 71 OPS+ is good enough for 2.5% of the HoF vote. Good times.

  8. Minoring In Baseball - Sep 19, 2013 at 9:26 PM

    Sandberg really talks positively about Bowa in the autobiography. It would be cool to see them back together.

  9. deathmonkey41 - Sep 19, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    I don’t know about that, but they should definitely being back Adam Eaton as pitching coach.

  10. gloccamorra - Sep 21, 2013 at 1:23 AM

    I’ve been staring at that picture of Bowa, and finally realized, he and Dan Rather are beginning to look alike.

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