From Comcast SportsNetPHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Philadelphia Phillies have hired Wally Joyner to be their assistant hitting coach.Joyner will assist new hitting coach Steve Henderson. The Phillies reshuffled their coaching staff after finishing 81-81 following five straight division titles.Joyner previously was the batting coach for San Diego during parts of the 2007 and 2008 seasons.The 50-year-old Joyner was a left-handed hitting first baseman for 16 seasons with four teams. He finished his career with a .289 batting average, 409 doubles, 204 home runs and 1,106 RBIs in 2,033 games.
FOXBORO -- The Patriots have signed free-agent tight end Rob Housler to a future contract. The 6-foot-5, 250-pound target last played for the Bears but was released at the end of training camp.
Housler won't be eligible to participate with the Patriots during the postseason, but he will be available for the offseason program and training camp leading up to the 2017 campaign.
Housler taken in the third round by the Cardinals with the 69th overall selection in 2011. In 65 career games, he has 109 catches for 1,166 yards and one touchdown.
The Patriots may have been intrigued by Housler's skill set last summer when he caught one pass for 52 yards -- making two Patriots defenders miss in the process -- during a preseason game at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots and Bears held joint training camp practices in August that would have given Patriots coaches and scouts a closer look at everything Housler has to offer as a player.
Housler was one of the better athletes at the NFL Scouting Combine in 2011, running a 4.55-second 40-yard dash (fastest among tight ends), posting a 6.9-second three-cone drill, and recording a 37-inch vertical leap.
Bill Belichick and his staff hit big on a future-contract signing two years ago when a running back with a significant injury history was available to scoop up at the behest of then-assistant to the coaching staff Michael Lombardi. Since then, the Patriots still have never lost with Dion Lewis in uniform.