His aggressive and often angry style combined with an extremely young and inexperienced roster led to a down 1987 season in San Diego, and when higher expectations for the 1988 team (mainly engendered by those young players showing greatly improved performances in the 2nd half of the 1987 season and the 1988 spring training slate) were not met, he was fired on May 28, 1988 with an overall record of 81-127 as the club's skipper.Bowa returned to the Phillies as the team's third base coach on August 11, 1988 and remained there through the 1996 season." After being released by the Cubs in August 1985, Bowa played the last month of the season with the New York Mets before retiring.
His NL records for career games at shortstop and most years leading the league in fielding were later broken by Ozzie Smith; his Major League record for career fielding average has been broken by Omar Vizquel.After retiring, Bowa was named manager of the Las Vegas Stars, the Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres, for the 1986 season.In 1993, he and John Vukovich became the first two Phillies in franchise history to go to the World Series with the club as both a player and coach (Vukovich was Bowa's teammate on the 1980 World Champions and was the bench coach for the '93 National League champs.Milt Thompson, an outfielder for the 1993 club, would become the third member of this group when he served as hitting coach for the 2008 World Champions and 2009 National League Champions).After being passed over for the job four years earlier, Bowa was named manager of the Phillies on November 1, 2000.
Taking over a team that had gone 65-97 in 2000, Bowa led the club to a surprising 86-76 mark in 2001, two games behind the National League East Champion Atlanta Braves.He retired with the NL record for career games at shortstop (2222) and the Major League records for fielding average in a career (.980) and a single season (.991, in 1979), and was also among the career leaders in assists (sixth, 6857) and double plays (fourth, 1265); his records have since been broken, though he retains the NL mark for career fielding average.Apart from his fielding achievements, he was a switch-hitter, batting .280 or better four times (.305 in 1975); he also had nine seasons with 20 or more stolen bases.Lawrence Robert Bowa (born December 6, 1945) is a former professional baseball shortstop, former manager, and coach in Major League Baseball.He played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and New York Mets; and also managed the San Diego Padres and Phillies. Mc Clatchy High School, Bowa tried out but never made the school's baseball team.Bowa was honored as National League Manager of the Year and also received the Sporting News NL Manager of the Year Award that year.