Klentak hired by Phils for GM post
Move comes one day after assistant GM Servais takes Mariners manager job
Matt Klentak, the No. 2 man in the Angels' front office for the past four years, has been hired as the Phillies' new general manager, sources confirmed to MLB.com on Saturday, one day after fellow assistant GM Scott Servais was named manager of the division-rival Mariners.
In his first year as Angels GM, Billy Eppler now seeks a new right-hand man and perhaps someone else to run scouting and player development.
Servais, mostly in charge of the latter duties since November 2011, was widely expected to leave the Angels at season's end, and it was no surprise he was hired by new Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto, the former Angels GM who has an extensive history with Servais. Klentak, however, was willing to stay with the Angels, and he would've remained in his current role if the Phillies hadn't offered him his dream job.
Klentak was introduced as the Phillies' vice president and GM on Monday.
Klentak had been a prime target ever since Andy MacPhail took over as team president midseason. Klentak previously worked under MacPhail in Baltimore, when MacPhail was the Orioles' president of baseball operations and Klentak served as director of baseball operations from 2008-11. This time around, Klentak, 35, beat out two other finalists for his first GM job -- A's assistant GM Dan Kantrovitz and Rays vice president of baseball operations Chaim Bloom.
Klentak grew up in Massachusetts and attended Dartmouth College, playing shortstop and majoring in economics. Shortly after graduation, he took an internship with the Rockies' baseball operations department in 2003, then landed a job with Major League Baseball's Labor Relations Department, where he helped negotiate the 2006 Collective Bargaining Agreement.
After four years at MLB headquarters, Klentak joined MacPhail with the Orioles. Four years after that, he was one of Dipoto's first hires with the Angels.
At the time, Dipoto called Klentak "extremely adept in his ability to navigate the rules." But he also felt Klentak brought "so much more to the table."
"Matt understands the inner workings of baseball from the field to the finance," Dipoto said then. "He understands baseball from the staff in the clubhouse to the players on the field to how to communicate back and forth with a finance department and ownership."
Klentak is analytically inclined, but he also sees value in scouting and overall makeup. In his four-year stint with the Angels, he handled everything from trades to free-agent signings to arbitration negotiations and all the logistics in between.
When Dipoto resigned on July 1 -- prompting Bill Stoneman to step in as interim general manager after an eight-year hiatus -- Klentak tackled most of the heavy lifting for the last three months. And amid tension between the coaching staff and front office, Klentak -- sensible, agreeable, even-tempered -- did his best to break down barriers and bring peace.