George Myatt assumed command of the Philadelphia Phillies upon the resignation of Bob Skinner. “I just hope we can play .500 ball for the rest of the season,” said Myatt. While .500 isn’t a lofty goal, it would represent a considerable improvement over the pace the Phillies have set this season. Asked if he would manager longer than the two months this year, Myatt responded, “I’ll have to cross that bridge when I come to it.”
While no big shakeup was planned by Myatt, a major league coach since 1950, there were some things that would be different, he said. They included a more relaxed set of rules for the players in some areas, although non could call Skinner a tough taskmaster in this regard; an intention to remain as third-base coach; a stress on fundamentals; and a change in the batting order the Phillies have been using.
Myatt, who accepted the job in a telephone call from General Manager John Quinn while he was in Reading for an exhibition game, said this wasn’t his first offer to manage in the majors. “I’ve been contacted a few times about managing,” Myatt said, “and turned them down, but I guess when I did, I had in the back of my mind that I’d like to give it a try.”
Myatt indicated he would restore Cookie Rojas to the regular lineup and that he would take Mike Ryan out of the eighth spot in the batting order. “I won’t hit my catcher in front of my pitcher,” he said, “He’s too slow and the pitcher can’t bunt him over.” His future as a manager may depend on his health. “The last time I managed,” he said, referring to 1948-49 at Chattanooga and Orlando, “I got ulcers.”