The Phillies didn't play a game on Monday but that doesn't mean fans didn't have something to get depressed about.
The talk of Philadelphia yesterday was an interview that team president David Montgomery did with the Bucks County Courier Times where he said the Phillies would never really go into full rebuild mode because, well... attendance, basically. Then his partner in crime over on Citizens Bank Way, GM Ruben Amaro Jr., was gracious enough to join the WIP morning team this A.M. to discuss this concept of "rebuilding" as well as some trade deadline topics.
We've transcribed some of the key parts of Ruben's conversation with Angelo Cataldi below, but the major takeaway to me is that RAJ doesn't believe it's fair to fans to go through a rebuild from the ground up. Fans don't deserve that, he says. But do they deserve the current team that is 10 games under .500 and has exactly zero young stars fans can get excited about watching for the next 5-10 seasons?
You can listen to the audio here.
On the team's undisciplined and rather bad approach at the plate:
"I think guys are maybe trying to do a little too much when you see guys swinging outside of the zone as often as we do. It's guys trying to create something that may not be there. We're not allowing pitchers to give us the advantage of taking a walk and creating more opportunities to score runs later in the inning. You're seeing guys trying to press, trying to do a little too much. And then on some occasions, you see guys just not swinging at good pitches."
"I think it's a combination of not being patient enough and guys trying to do to much."
On full sell mode:
"It's a little different in this market. For us to say 'okay, guys, this is what we're going to do. We're going to stop winning, or trying to win for the next five or six years and we're going to try and build a team from the ground up, or rebuild it from the ground up.' I think that's something that in our market place and with what our fanbase is all about, I don't think that's fair. I don't think it's fair to them. I don't think it's fair to the organization, I don't think it's fair to the players on the field. My philosophy has always been, and you've known me a long time, I always want to win. I always want to put our team in a position to try and win every single year. There may be years, and we may be coming up on that, type of transition where we may have to say to ourselves, 'okay, we may need to take a couple steps back to move forward.' But for us to do a total blowup, I agree with David [Montgomery] in that regard, that it's just not something that our fans deserve or something necessarily that we need to do. What we do need to do is improve and get better and work on that everyday."
On current trade talks:
"We've had continuous conversations with various clubs. I've probably talked with 15-20 clubs about what they're looking to try do. There are still so many teams in limbo. I do have a very good idea of what teams need what if they want to be buyers. And I do know teams that may be looking to try and move players if they go into 'sell mode.' We've got a month to go. That's a lot longer than people think. We've got an All-Star break to deal with, we have a very important road trip to see exactly where we stand. I'll have a much better idea where we stand come the All-Star break. If we reel off and have the kind of road trip that we had on this last road trip in St. Louis and Atlanta, then we can get ourselves back in this thing. If we don't, we'll be looking to go in a different direction."
Perhaps the best part of the entire interview comes from Angelo Cataldi's closing remarks:
"For all the abuse that man has taken, Sam Hinkie could learn a little from that conversation. Just being open a little bit, giving people a little bit of something to think about."
Perhaps that's his legacy in Philadelphia. Ruben Amaro Jr: open, giving us all a little bit of something to think about.