MacPhail evaluating GM, manager positions
New club president looking to learn about system, decide how to move forward
PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies ownership partner John Middleton said Monday that Andy MacPhail will have every resource at his disposal to rebuild the Phils.
That includes money.
"The mandate is to win," Middleton said at Citizens Bank Park, where the Phillies introduced MacPhail as the next team president. "We're telling Andy and his team that you need to tell us what you need to win. We're not going to hand him a budget and tell him, 'You get to spend 'X' dollars next year.' We're going to tell him and say, 'You tell us what you can do for this team in order to win.' We want him to create the best team for the Phillies for it to have success in the long run. And we're out to fund that."
But MacPhail will need good people around him, too. So he plans to spend the next three-plus months evaluating the entire baseball operations department. That includes general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., whose contract expires at the end of the season, as well as finding the next on-field manager. Pete Mackanin is the interim manager through the homestand, which ends Thursday.
"As you go through the three months, you're going to learn a lot about the system," MacPhail said. "And you're going to try to discern, eventually in three months when this highly-paid-in-charge-of-nothing-gig runs out, you're going to have to discern the best way to move forward. And what is the quickest most efficient way to get there? And whatever decisions follow as a result of that, they follow."
Multiple sources mentioned Angels assistant general manager Matt Klentak, 34, as somebody MacPhail might be interested in as general manager. MacPhail hired Klentak in March 2008, when he was with the Orioles, making him one of the youngest executives in baseball.
MacPhail said Monday he has no list of candidates for any potential openings.
But openings are expected. Ryne Sandberg created one Friday when he resigned as manager. He said he saw changes coming to the organization and essentially figured he would not be part of the future.
Amaro said he does not feel the same way.
"Listen, I believe in being a Philadelphia Phillie for my life," Amaro said. "My goal is to work with Andy and Pat and to get our organization back to the level it's been.
"I can't worry about what decisions Andy or Pat are going to be making as far as my personal status is concerned. My goal is to try to get us back to where we need to be. And as far as my status is concerned, I just need to go out and do my job. We've made some decisions that have worked and some that haven't. This is a cyclical game and I understand that. At the same time, I think we're on a very good path right now and I'm hopeful that I'm part of getting us back to where we need to be."
Gillick said Mackanin's status will be announced following this week's homestand.
"We're not going to make the decision on a manager for 2016 now," Gillick said. "It will be an interim position, whoever it is. After I leave, Andy or whoever the general manager is, they're going to make the decision who the manager is for 2016. That's the decision that lies with them. We don't want to hire a permanent manager right now, because I think that wouldn't be the right thing to do. That will be Andy and whoever the GM, that would be their decision."