CLEARWATER, Fla. - Phillies manager Pete Mackanin is hitting his players in their wallets if they fail to exercise fundamentals or demonstrate hustle. The manager began issuing fines this spring - to the tune of just 50 cents - for players mishaps during spring training.
"It allows me to be a real [jerk] about things like that," Mackanin said. "What are you going to complain about 50 cents?"
Mackanin reads off the fines each morning during the team's daily meeting. The entire team is fined each time a player breaks one of Mackanin's rules. A player jogged into second base on a double instead of rounding the bag? That would be fifty cents. A player missed the cutoff man on a relay throw? Fifty cents. A player carried their bat down the first base line instead of charging out of the box? That will cost fifty cents.
The team has raised nearly $1,000 so far as the pot started to grow when nearly 65 players reported last month to spring training. The fines will continue during the season. Mackanin said the money will be donated to charity, likely the Baseball Assistance Team, which was founded in 1986 "to confidentially help members of the Baseball Family who were in need of assistance with nowhere else to turn."
"When I announce the fines,'This week you have $2.50,' and I announce the last fine, a half dozen players get on that guy," Mackanin said. "Not meanly, but like come on. Don't do that anymore."