Kranitz, McLaren added to Phils' coaching staff

Kranitz, McLaren added to Phils' coaching staff

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies have added two new coaches to their staff, while they wait to hear back from a couple more.

The team announced Wednesday that Rick Kranitz and John McLaren will be the bullpen coach and catching coach, respectively. Kranitz spent the past five seasons as the Brewers pitching coach, while McLaren spent the past four seasons as a scout with the A's.

"John has been around a long time, he's got a lot of experience," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said Wednesday evening. "He can do anything I really need, anything I want zeroed in on. Rick was my pitching coach in Venezuela in 1989. We go back a long way."

Kranitz, 57, also served as a pitching coach with the Orioles (2008-10) and Marlins ('06-07). McLaren, 64, has 23 years of coaching experience with the Blue Jays, Red Sox, Reds, Mariners, Rays and Nationals. He managed 159 games for the Mariners ('07-08) and Nationals ('11).

Hitting coach Steve Henderson and pitching coach Bob McClure already have agreed to contracts for next season. The Phillies will not have an assistant hitting coach, like they had the previous three seasons. Bench coach Larry Bowa and first-base coach Juan Samuel still have offers to return, but they have not made their decisions yet.

Bowa is interviewing for the Marlins' managerial vacancy, while Samuel is exploring other opportunities.

"There's a chance I might lose those guys, so I'd have to come up with replacements," Mackanin said. "If Larry gets that job, I'm going to be real happy for him. If not, I'm going to be happy he's coming back. It's same thing with Juan. I'd hate to lose Juan. He's valuable and he's done an outstanding job. I don't want to lose either guy."

If Samuel returns, he will become the third base coach. Samuel would coach base stealing. 

The Phillies still plan to add one more coach, who would be the team's first base coach and focus on base running. One candidate for that job is Jorge Velandia, who joined the coaching staff when former manager Ryne Sandberg quit in June. But the Phillies might want Velandia to return to the front office, where he was a special assistant for player personnel.

"Base running is so poor throughout Major League Baseball," Mackanin said. "I want to zero in on that, and I want somebody who is going to have that as their baby on an everyday basis to stay on top of it.

"Once that is set, then all we need is a GM."

Phillies president Andy MacPhail is entering a final round of interviews with candidates. FOXSports.com reported Tuesday that A's assistant general manager Dan Kantrovitz will receive a second interview. Angels assistant GM Matt Klentak is also believed to be one of the candidates.

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.