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Phillies extend manager Rob Thomson through 2025 season

Thomson was initially given the job after Joe Girardi was fired midway through 2022.

Manager Rob Thomson of the Philadelphia Phillies looks on prior to Game Three of the National League Championship Series against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on October 19, 2023 in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The first signing of Winter Meetings for the Philadelphia Phillies wasn’t a player at all. The team announced on Monday that it’s signed manager Rob Thomson to a one-year extension, avoiding the uneasiness of a lame-duck year in 2024 and putting him under contract through the 2025 season.

Thomson, 60, spent the first decade of his big-league coaching career as Yankees bench coach under manager Joe Girardi. He served the same role on Gabe Kapler’s staff with the Phillies, then stayed aboard when Philly fired Kapler and hired Girardi ahead of the 2020 season. Entering 2022, it seemed like leading a team just wasn’t in the cards for Thomson; he privately told the Phils that that season to be his last before retirement.

And then everything changed. Girardi was fired in June after a disappointing start, and Philly decided to name Thomson as interim manager — his first time in charge of a Major League clubhouse. All he did with it was lead the Phillies to a 65-46 record the rest of the way, not only making the postseason but winning the NL pennant as well before bowing out in the World Series to the Houston Astros. That magical run earned Thomson the full-time job, and a two-year contract extension carrying him through 2024.

Despite Rhys Hoskins’ torn ACL, Trea Turner’s slow start, a down year from Aaron Nola and Bryce Harper missing substantial time, Thomson still guided the Phillies to a 90-72 record in 2023, good enough to once again reach the playoffs as a Wild Card team. And once again, Philly sprung a dramatic upset of the Braves in the NLDS, with Thomson pushing all the right buttons out of the bullpen to help keep Atlanta’s fearsome bats at bay. Their run ended in shocking fashion in the next round, losing Games 6 and 7 of the NLCS at home to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

But Thomson remains beloved in the locker room and can hardly be said to have underachieved in either of his two years in charge. He’d earned the right to avoid lame-duck status entering the 2024 season, and GM Dave Dombrowski apparently agreed, ensuring that the Phillies won’t have to be worried about their manager’s job if they get off to a slow start.

Philly also announced they had hired Dustin Lind and Rafael Peña as assistant hitting coaches. Lind had previously served with the San Francisco Giants over the last several seasons. Peña, meanwhile, had been a member of the Houston Astros coaching staff.