Remember Scott Mathieson, the Canadian reliever who made 15 total appearances with the Phillies over three seasons (2006; 2010-11) for a 6.75 major-league ERA? He otherwise spent nine seasons in the Phillies' farm system before being released in 2011 and is now pitching in Japan?
Why are we talking about Scott Mathieson on a Friday afternoon? Because he's suggesting a replacement for Rich Dubee, and further suggesting that many Phillies pitchers would be on board.
@inthephilshouse yes rod is by far the best coach I've had and I know that most of the pitcher for the phillies feel the same way.
— Scott mathieson (@mathieson_scott) July 12, 2013
— Mandy Housenick (@inthephilshouse) July 12, 2013
"Rod" is Phillies bullpen coach Rod Nichols, who spent eight years as the organization's Triple A pitching coach before getting his call up to the majors in 2012.
Mathieson deleted his original tweet suggesting that he "would would love to see [Nichols] take dubee's job," but Mandy Housenick, Phils beat writer for the Allentown Morning Call, whom he was tweeting to, had already copy/pasted. (Nothing says high drama in 2013 like deleted tweets. Nothing.)
She added a little note about Ryan Madson and Brett Myers that's either sincere about their relationship with Nichols or sarcastic about their relationship with Dubee. Tough to tell.
Either way, this is the second former Phillies reliever who's suggested Dubee be replaced this season. The first one was of a little higher name value. From Jim Salisbury back in May:
“It may be time for a new voice,” [Mitch] Williams told WIP. “It’s not personal. I think these pitchers have to hear something new. What they’re doing right now just isn’t getting it done.”
Williams mentioned a dustup the two men had in spring training after Dubee scolded him for interfering with the team’s pitchers.
“It irritated me,” Williams said of the incident.
According to a source, Williams reached out to pitcher Jake Diekman and offered pitching advice and that didn’t sit well with Dubee.
“Maybe I hurt his feelings with the dustup, but I don't know,” Dubee said. “Mitch has got a chance. He can apply to 30 teams (to be a pitching coach). You know? I've got no comment to that. Maybe he got upset because I spoke to him about getting involved in our pitching, where I don't think he belongs. Maybe he's upset at that. But I don't think other people belong in our pitching. Again, like I said, he's got a chance to submit a resume.”
In the radio interview, Williams claimed he taught Kyle Kendrick the changeup, a pitch that has helped the right-hander immensely as he has gone 10-4 with 2.43 ERA in his last 16 starts dating to August.
Kendrick laughed about that.
Of note, those pitchers on the Phillies' staff, particularly Roy Halladay, immediately stood up for Dubee, and many of them reportedly have a good rapport with him. As for their performance, Seidman detailed earlier this week that the starting rotation was one of the best in baseball. The opposite is true of the bullpen.
This is a small part, but just another part, of the Phillies' buy-or-sell, where-are-we-going drama. Lost in the shuffle of what Ruben Amaro should immediately do at this year's trade deadline is that Charlie Manuel's contract is up at the end of the season, and that the coaching staff could go through some changes.
Meanwhile, the Phillies have won seven of their last 10 and are making it hard for Amaro to decide about much of anything.
Dubee or sell?