Jim Benedict Reportedly Impressed the Phillies in His Interview

Jim Benedict, talking to Pirates' farm director Kyle Stark.
Jim Benedict, talking to Pirates’ farm director Kyle Stark.

Two weeks ago we heard that the Philadelphia Phillies would be interviewing Jim Benedict, who is currently a special advisor to Neal Huntington, and has played a key role working with pitchers like Charlie Morton and Gerrit Cole.

Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly hears that Benedict impressed team officials in his interview (h/t RumBunter). Salisbury listed several other candidates who have received interviews, but none of them came with good reports. Here is the list of players the Phillies have pursued and the status, via Salisbury:

Roger McDowell – Decided to remain with Atlanta on a two year extension

Bryan Price – Hired by the Reds

Pete Vuckovich – Removed his name from consideration

Rod Nichols – The Phillies’ 2013 bullpen coach. No status given.

Ray Burris – The Phillies’ 2013 Triple-A pitching coach. No status given.

Reid Cornelius – Miami’s bullpen coach was interviewed, but is no longer under consideration.

Neil Allen – Tampa Bay’s Triple-A pitching coach, also no longer under consideration.

Based on that list, it looks like Benedict is the front runner. However, Salisbury notes that Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has been tight-lipped in his search, and it is unknown if he will interview other candidates. So it’s possible that there are more names who are still in the running, and more names still to get an interview.

All you need to do is look at Benedict’s track record to see that it would be a loss for the Pirates and a win for the Phillies if he was hired.

  • I hope Benedict does not go, but we have to get used to top players leaving because of contractual issues and top coaches getting picked up. The thing to remember is that this organization is very systematic, as long as they stick to the system, all they need to do is plug someone else in.

  • The only thing the Pirates cannot dare to experience is a loss of one of the key people involved in the development of young pitchers. If Benedict is as important as many of us think, NH will find a way to re-sign him to a new title. The whole system works off of one book, with all of the minor league levels in lock step with one another and all with the common goals of the Pirates Baseball Club. Yes there are a lot of moving parts, but there are very few people directing the operation and keeping everybody on the same page – Jim Benedict is one of those very few.

  • Logical to assume Pirates will begin to experience a brain drain when they are having this much success in building a winner. One of the keys to remaining successful is the ability to replace the losses with effective leaders. Stands to reason, if NH can build a winning organization once by hiring the right people for his system, he’ll be able to repeat the process.

    • Jim’s protege also works with the team. Pitching coordinator Scott Mitchell is a fine coach and has worked with Jim for a long time. Jim brought Scott to the Pirates.