Professional Baseball Strength & Conditioning


Philadelphia Phillies Strength and Conditioning Program


The Phillies Strength and Conditioning Program under the direction of Paul Fournier, Major League Strength and Conditioning Coach, Dong Lein, Major League Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach and Furey Leva, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator, is composed of 10 uniquely qualified strength and conditioning coaches and a lead dietician. The Phillies Strength and Conditioning Program encompasses all aspects of performance (movement, recovery and regeneration, nutrition, flexibility, energy system development, strength, speed, power, evaluation, etc.). Their goals are to facilitate player development, increase the potential for success, reduce the risk of injury and prepare players for championship competition at all levels.

The Phillies staff has worked alongside and been mentored by some of the most respected professionals in the sports medicine, coaching, training and performance enhancement industry. The staff members are:

Paul Fournier, Major League Strength and Conditioning Coach. Paul is a 25-year veteran in professional baseball. His experience includes stints with the Montreal Expos as a Minor League Athletic Trainer (1995-1996) and Rehab Strength and Conditioning Coordinator (2002). He assumed a similar role with the Miami Marlins in 2002 and served as their Major League Strength and Conditioning Director from 2003-2011.  He joined the Phillies in 2012 as Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator before being promoted to his current position in 2014.

Paul earned a BS degree in Athletic Training and Exercise Science from Northeastern University in Boston in 1993. He received the John McHale Award for Outstanding Player Development from the Expos in 1999 and was the National League Strength and Conditioning Coach in the 2014 MLB All-Star Game. He is a certified by the National Athletic Trainers Association, NSCA (CSCS and RSCC*E) and USAW.

Dong Lien, Major League Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach. Dong has been with the Phillies for 15 years. He joined them as Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator in 2007 and was promoted to the Major League staff in 2008. He received his BS degree in Exercise Sports Science, Athletic Therapy/Training in 2003 from the University of Manitoba and MS in Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention from California University of Pennsylvania in 2010. Dong was the International League Strength Coach of the Year in 2015 and received the Dick Martin Award as part of best sports medicine staff in 2009. He is certified by the NSCA (RSCC*D), National Athletic Trainers Association, and fluent in Chinese.

Furey Leva, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coordinator. A Philadelphia native, Furey joined the Phillies organization in 2017 after four years as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates player development staff (2013-2016). He worked as a strength coach at four minor league stops for the Pirates: Indianapolis (AAA), Altoona (AA), Bradenton (High A) and Jamestown (Short-season A). He also spent one year (2013) as an assistant strength coach for Temple University football and two years as the head baseball strength coach for North Penn High School. Furey earned his BS degree in Kinesiology, Exercise and Sports Science from Temple University in 2012 and is certified by the NSCA (CSCS and RSCC), USAW (Sports Performance Coach) and FMS Level 1 certified.

Alexa Scully, Major League Team Performance Dietitian. Alexa joined the Phillies in 2018 as the Clearwater Facilities and Dominican Republic Academy Dietitian and was promoted to Major League Dietitian in 2019. Prior to joining the Phillies, she was an NFL Combine Training Coach at IMG Academy (2015) and a Sports Dietitian for the Chicago Cubs AA affiliate, the Tennessee Smokies (2016-2017). Alexa received a BS in Food Science and Nutrition with an emphasis on Dietetics from Middle Tennessee State University in 2013 and MS in Clinical Nutrition in 2015. She is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics.

Ellen Rice, Minor League Nutrition Coordinator. Rice came to the Phillies from the Madison Square Garden Company where she was the Assistant Team Dietitian for the New York Rangers hockey club and the New York Knicks basketball team during the 2018-2019 season. Prior to that she worked with multiple teams at North Carolina State University and spent a number of years working in the hospital system before moving to Sports Nutrition full time. Ellen is an Ohio native and has a bachelor’s degree in Nutrition from The Ohio State University. She has been a Registered Dietitian since 2014 and is also a board-certified specialist (CSSD) in Sports Nutrition.¬†

Mike Lidge, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coach, Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (International League). Lidge joined the Phillies in of 2016 after four years as a member of the San Francisco Giants player development staff as a strength coach in Richmond (AA), San Jose (High A), and Scottsdale (Rookie AZL). He earned BS in Kinesiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2011, and MS in Exercise Science from Northeastern Illinois University in 2013. He completed an internship with Athlete’s Performance (now EXOS) in Phoenix, AZ in 2011. He is certified by the NSCA (CSCS), NASM (Corrective Exercise Specialist) and USAW (Sports Performance Coach).

Kenny Matanane, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coach, Reading Fightin Phils (Eastern League). Kenny is in his 6th year with the Phillies. Prior to joining the Phillies, he worked as a Strength Coach for Washington State University (2011-2105, Pittsburgh Pirates (2010-2011) and Seattle Seahawks 2008-2010). He received his BS in Kinesiology and Exercise Science and Business Administration in 1998 and MS in Kinesiology and Exercise Science from Central Washington University in 2007. Kenny is certified by the NSCA (CSCS) and USA Weightlifting (Performance Coach).

Jose Salas, Clearwater Threshers (Florida State League). Jose joined the Phillies in 2016 after working as an Athletic Trainer at a hospital and Assistant Athletic Trainer for the Braves (2014). He received his BS in Athletic Training from Culver Stockton College in 2012 and MS in Kinesiology from Tarleton State University in 2014. He is a certified athletic trainer and certified strength and conditioning coach (NSCA ‚Äď CSCS) and USA Weightlifting Certified Performance Coach.

Holly Hansing, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coach GCL East Phillies (Gulf Coast League). Holly has two years of experience with the Phillies (2018 ‚Äď 2019) after serving as a volunteer strength and conditioning coach at the College of Southern Idaho (2017-2019) and GA at Austin Peay State University (2016-2017). She received her BS in Kinesiology and Exercise Science from Colorado State University ‚Äď Pueblo in 2014 and MS in Health and Human Performance from Austin Peay in 2017.

Orlando Crance, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coach, GCL West Phillies (Gulf Coast League). Orlando joined the Phillies in 2017 after working for the Yankees for four years. He was Minor League Coach (2013-2015) and MLB Assistant Director of Strength and Conditioning for the Yankees (2016-2017). Orlando Graduate Student and Clinical Research Associate РIntern at Columbia University in 2011 and 2012. He has a BS in Recreation, Exercise and Nutrition from City University of New York and MS in Exercise Physiology from Columbia University. 

Vanessa Gomez, Strength and Conditioning Associate (Clearwater). Vanessa, originally from New Jersey, joined the Phillies organization this season (2019). She started her strength and conditioning career at Virginia Commonwealth University working with the Rams men’s and women’s tennis teams (2018). Vanessa earned her BS degree in Kinesiology, from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in 2016 and is set to complete her MS in Exercise Science from Liberty University in December 2019. She is certified by the NSCA (CSCS).

Ervis Manzanillo, Minor League Strength and Conditioning Coach, DSL Phillies (Dominican Summer League). Ervis was a former pitcher for the Phillies minor league system for 4 seasons (2009-2012). Joined the player development staff in 2015 as Strength and Conditioning coach for the Venezuelan Summer League Phillies before taking on the same role with the Domincan Summer League in 2016.

Walter Grandez, Strength and Conditioning Associate (Dominican Academy). Walter joined the Phillies organization in the Summer of 2019 after previously working with Olympic and Paralympic athletes at the United States Olympic and Paralympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Walter served as an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach for Team USA athletes and helped create and implement performance programs for athletes in preparation for the Pan American 2019 games and the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics. A native to the Los Angeles, California area, Walter also served as an Intern Strength Coach in the Fall of 2018 at the University of Southern California and worked closely with their PAC-12 football program. Walter also served as an Assistant Sports Performance Coach at California State University, Northridge (CSUN) for 18 months and oversaw all aspects of performance for Baseball and Men’s Soccer and Golf. He earned a BS in Kinesiology from CSUN in 2016 and is currently pursuing a MS degree at A.T. Still University in Mesa, AZ. Walter is certified by the NSCA (CSCS), USAW (Sports Performance Coach), XPS (EXOS Performance Specialist) and is FMS Level 1 certified.


About the Author

One Comment

  1. Tyler Vanderbilt / March 4, 2020 at 6:53 pm /Reply

    Hi, my name is Tyler Vanderbilt and I am a certified Strength and Conditioning Coach. I have been training athletes locally for over 8 years and working as a personal trainer during that span. It has always been a dream of mine to work with professional athletes and I know my skill set can be extremely valuable to a ball club given the opportunity.

    Tyler Vanderbilt

    Barnegat, NJ, 08005


    Qualifications Profile 

    Success driven fitness professional with a evidenced based approach to Strength and Conditioning. Providing life long sustainable nutritional guidance for the general public as well as sport specific and special populations. Experienced in conducting fitness evaluations and developing exercise programs for all populations.

                         Work History

    Retro Fitness – Personal Trainer (March 2018- July 2019)

    Fitness evaluation assessment.

    Developing excercise programs designed towards strength, hypertrophy and endurance.

    Integrating linear and undulating periodization methodologies into client programming. 

    Providing complete nutrition coaching by monitoring macro and micro nutrient intake, tottal energy balance and laying out specific weekly goals that focus on improving healthy eating habits and overall diet adherence.

    Developing relationships with members and recruiting new clientele.

    Focus on quality customer service and assisting members on how to safely perform excercise.


    Ocean County College Certificate of Proficiency in Personal Training.


       American Red Cross First Aid & CPR/AED Certification


     NCSF Certified Personal Trainer 

    NCSF Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach

    NCSF Certified Sports Nutrition Specialists

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