As their dismal 2022 season rolled into its third month — and in the midst of losing 12 of their last 17 games — the Phillies decided it was time to make a change.
On Friday morning, the team announced what many had been speculating on for weeks now: Joe Girardi is out as Phillies manager. In his stead, bench coach Rob Thomson will take over as interim manager for the remainder of the year — not unlike what the Flyers did when they relieved Alain Vigneault of his duties during their 2021-22 campaign — rather than the team bringing in someone new to finish out the season.
What that means for the team’s chances going forward remains to be seen, as it appears fairly clear that its issues goes well beyond the manager. A thin roster that’s already been hurt by injuries, including one to reigning National League MVP Bryce Harper that is interrupting what was shaping up to be another MVP campaign.
But it’s safe to say that Phillies fans are happy to see Girardi go. Just look at the results of our totally unscientific Twitter poll.
And it’s not just the fans. Even those who get paid to offer their opinions seem almost giddy over the news.
“I wanted this,” said 94.1 WIP host and former Eagles fullback Jon Ritchie. “We needed something, some type of shakeup… I don’t think this solves everything, but I do think it’s a start.”
Ritchie’s co-host, Joe DeCamara, was in agreement, but added that the players need to take a look in the mirror as well.
“It had to be done. I think it’s the right move,” said DeCamara. “Girardi was a massive disappointment… You think you’re getting an adult that can help you get to the playoffs. He did not... I hope the players know they were a big contributor to getting the guy fired. It’s the right call to fire him... But they’ve done a horrendous job as players, most of them.”
Their counterpart on the city’s other sports talk station didn’t hold back either.
“Zombie Joe was a mook,” 97.5 The Fanatic host Anthony Gargano said after news broke of Girardi’s firing. “Yet another manager fired by the Phillies. Wow.”
“Doesn’t it speak volumes that we’re all so excited that Joe Girardi got fired?” Gargano added. “Every Yankees fan was right.”
As Gargano hinted at, there was a lot of excitement over the news on Twitter — as well as some level-headed analysis about what this means moving forward. Let’s take a look at some of the best from both the fans and the media alike.