AP – Longtime Philadelphia Phillies broadcaster Chris Wheeler is out after nearly four decades in the booth and Gary Matthews isn’t returning as color analyst, several people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The team recently signed a new television contract with NBCUniversal and Comcast SportsNet that’s reportedly worth $2.5 billion over 25 years. The decision to replace Wheeler and Matthews came from the network, according to multiple sources. The Phillies said Wheeler and Matthews will continue to work with the organization in other roles. The 68-year-old Wheeler started with the Phillies in 1971 and was the longest-tenured member of the broadcast team. “Wheels” did play-by-play and color analysis on television and radio, and for years was teamed with Hall of Fame broadcaster Harry Kalas. The 63-year-old Matthews was a television color analyst the past seven seasons and also worked on radio. Matthews played 16 seasons in the majors and was the 1973 NL Rookie of the Year with San Francisco and 1983 NLCS MVP with Philadelphia. “As the longest-tenured member of the Phillies broadcasting team, Chris Wheeler will return to his club roots after stepping down from his role as a Phillies broadcaster,” the team said in a statement.


A long time coming for most Phillies fans in regards to “Wheels”. Does anyone know how the Marple Newton graduate who never played ball outside of high school with a voice and toupee that would make Helen Keller shriek not only snaked his way into the booth as a color analyst but has been able to stay there all this time? Granted, he got chirped A LOT more than he deserved, but the man had big shoes to fill after Whitey passed and he obviously didn’t have the gusto to fill it.

With Sarge, I felt many were very indifferent with him. He was very hit or miss and his happy go lucky shtick didn’t exactly fly with the Philadelphia faithful. We need someone who will tell it like it is win or lose (like LA) giving analysis and not someone who is chipper and optimistic all the freaking time. Can’t knock the Fedora, though.

Now all we need is Harry, Whitey and Andy Musser to rise from their respective graves to oust that NY fan McCarthy and call the games for the next 1000 years. Oh, and get a competitive team back on the diamond. That should be a necessity, too. It’s cool though, Ruben’s got all the faith in the world in his boy “Byrdie”…excuse me while I load the last gun in my bullet to eat later.

And Sarge, hopefully you continue to Jerk Off The Ball wherever ye may be.

PS – LONG LIVE FRANZKE AND LA. Seriously, why aren’t they on TV calling the games? Hopefully this is in the works…

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