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Mackanin will manage Phils for rest of season

Interim skipper's priority in line with Amaro's to develop young players

PHILADELPHIA -- General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. announced Tuesday that the Phillies will retain Pete Mackanin as interim manager through the rest of the season.

Mackanin took over as interim manager Friday after former manager Ryne Sandberg resigned from his post. At the time, Amaro and team president Pat Gillick said that Mackanin would hold the post at least through the homestand before a decision on the rest of the season was made. Now, with the security of 83 more games to manage, Mackanin said he will be able to do what he and Amaro feel is best for the organization.

"Because I have priority players that are young players that we want to try to develop, I'm just going to continue to try to develop them as much as possible and try to get them to where we think they can be and move on to the future," Mackanin said.

But despite Mackanin pledging to make future-minded moves, Amaro said that this job does not guarantee Mackanin a managerial job any later than October.

"I think it's pretty clear, this does not necessarily mean that he's a candidate to take the job beyond the year by any stretch of the imagination," Amaro said. "I think we're going to have basically a clean slate to make that decision. Pete may or may not be part of that decision-making process, and Pete understands that."

Amaro said that though there were some internal candidates to take over aside from Mackanin, he did not believe this was the time to interview outside candidates for any jobs. The factors that differentiated Mackanin from other Phillies coaches with managerial experience, such as Larry Bowa and Juan Samuel, was Mackanin's history as an interim manager -- this is his third time doing so -- and his overall demeanor.

To offset the gap on the coaching staff Sandberg left, special assistant director of player personnel Jorge Velandia will take over as a coach. Mackanin said that he will not be given a specific position but will use his rapport with the players to aid Samuel, Bowa and the rest of the staff.

Nick Suss is an associate reporter for
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