Ryne Sandberg resigned from his role as manager of the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday with the team holding the worst record in baseball at 26-48. The Phillies announced that Pete Mackanin will take over as manager on an interim basis.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports confirmed the Baseball Hall of Famer’s departure. Although the Phillies clearly lacked the necessary talent to contend for a postseason berth this season, Rosenthal provided some thoughts from behind the scenes on why the club may have wanted to go in a different direction:

Sandberg compiled a 119-159 record across parts of three seasons with the Phillies. The organization is currently caught in the middle, with a necessary rebuild at hand but several veteran players like Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and Cole Hamels still on the roster.

Fox Sports MLB passed along Sandberg’s comments about his decision to resign:

His future status with the club was also in question, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, so his decision to leave now avoids any possible conflict:

Simply put, it’s hard to imagine any top candidates wanting the Phillies job right now. They are a team in transition, and it’s going to take some time to sort things out. The rebuild may also require some big trades at the deadline, so Mackanin could hold the position until season’s end.

The outlook for Philadelphia should become more clear after the trade deadline, as the team will likely deal its aging players while bringing in replacements to build around. At that point, it should become easier to sell the managerial job to prospective candidates, who will be able to help craft and mold the roster their way for the future.

With Sandberg apparently feeling change on the horizon, he decided to step away on his terms. And with the team struggling, it’s hard to blame him.  


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