Dillon hired as Phillies new hitting coach under Girardi

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joe Dillon has been hired as hitting coach for the Philadelphia Phillies under new manager Joe Girardi.

Dillon served as assistant hitting coach for the Washington Nationals for the past two seasons and previously spent two seasons as the minor league hitting coordinator for the Miami Marlins. He began his coaching career with the Nationals in 2014 as hitting coach for Triple-A Syracuse for two seasons.

Under Dillon and hitting coach Kevin Long, the Nationals led the National League in on-base percentage (.338) and ranked second in batting average (.259), runs (1,644), OPS (.775) and walks (1,215) over the past two seasons. Washington’s 20.7% strikeout rate was the fifth-lowest in the majors.

Dillon played parts of four seasons in the majors with the Florida Marlins, Milwaukee Brewers and Tampa Bay Rays from 2005-09. He combined to slash .263/.344/.378 over 137 games in his major league career.

His hiring was announced Thursday.

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