They may be a mere 5.5 games back of first place in the NL East, but you won’t find many people outside the organization who still believe the Philadelphia Phillies have a shot at the postseason. To the contrary, most of the locals would gladly take up torches and pitchforks if it meant general manager Ruben Amaro Jr.’s exodus from the team.
No matter how many calls you make to WIP though, no matter how many comments you leave on internet forums, there’s only man who can force Amaro out. That, of course, would be Phillies club president David Montgomery, and according to Matt Gelb for the Inquirer, it doesn’t sound like he’s prepared to drop the axe anytime soon.
"I just believe that group of people gave us the successful period we had," Montgomery said earlier this week. "They had different roles in it. I know people focus on Ruben's role having changed vis-a-vis 2009 vs. 2008. But I talked to Pat Gillick about our club this morning. Pat Gillick sat in that entire draft. It's not like we're not benefiting from the thinking of the same people we had before. That's why you have to look at whole body of work. Have we been served well? My answer to that is yes."
"I just try to pay attention," Montgomery said. "I think we have pretty good people doing these jobs. We saw, over a long period, pretty good success with this group of people. Obviously, Ruben is part of that group."
Montgomery doesn’t explicitly come out and say to Gelb that Amaro couldn’t be fired. In fact, Montgomery cites as example the time he fired Ed Wade as Phillies GM—after eight years on the job, mind you—with whom he described being in “lockstep” as far as building the team was concerned.
Of course, there is at least one massive difference between Wade’s and Amaro’s tenure. Under Wade, the Phils were actually improved from when he took over the job, as opposed to Amaro, who currently has the franchise on pace for its worst finish since 2000.
Montgomery refuses to use the word “rebuilding” as well, at least in terms of a Phillies strategy, which some fans could also take issue with. All of that and more in Gelb’s piece, as the club president discusses the front office at length.