Matt Gelb has a wide-ranging interview with David Montgomery in Thursday’s edition of The Inquirer. The Phillies president gives general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. a vote of a confidence – much to your delight – and talks the organization’s upcoming TV deal.
But what we really want to know almost a month after the fact is where Phillies brass falls on Charlie Manuel’s firing. The higher-ups have been relatively quiet on the popular manager’s dismissal, but then Manuel probably would still be here if somebody above Amaro's head really had a problem with it.
"Some people think when we did it was disrespectful," Montgomery said Wednesday before the Phillies defeated the San Diego Padres, 4-2. "But to do it much earlier than that would have really been . . ."
"We were not the club we envisioned to be in either of the last two years coming out of spring training. I probably would have been very accepting of letting Charlie finish the year. But I think we owed him, when Charlie asked if he was going to be renewed, an honest answer."
So then this was really about Manuel’s contract that was set to expire at the end of the year? Remember, Charlie was adamant that he didn’t quit his post, he was fired. No doubt he wasn’t thrilled about being a lame duck, but I’m not sure what that had to do with the timing of the decision to let him go.
Montgomery goes on to add he hoped Manuel continues to feel like a welcome member of the Phillies family.
It’s all water under the bridge now. Charlie was gone at season’s end anyway, and Ryne Sandberg is doing a fine job of mixing things up as the interim manager – it looks and sounds like the job will be his. Check out Gelb’s interview for more from David Montgomery.