The Phillies have already fired longtime manager Charlie Manuel and replaced him with Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg on an interim basis, but team president and CEO David Montgomery told Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that they're not planning to part ways with general manager Ruben Amaro Jr.
When asked if there was any thought to replacing Amaro, Montgomery plainly voiced his confidence by stating, "Ruben is our general manager." Gelb asked Montgomery about Amaro's ability to turn the franchise around:
"I've seen Ruben at work since 1999. I've seen the diligence he's put in as an assistant GM. I think he benefited greatly from the opportunity to work under two very good, but very different general managers in style with Ed [Wade] and Pat [Gillick] … One of the things Ruben has done well is, we make decisions. That's a good thing. Where you get in trouble in life is if you start to think you should make decisions and the people working for you should support your decision. We listen to the opinions of others and then we make decisions together, that's a good thing."
Montgomery also doesn't feel the need to make changes elsewhere in the front office, noting that the front office still has the same collection of minds that identified Jayson Werth as a potential everyday right fielder when no one else was interested.
As for Manuel's firing, Montgomery said that he was fine with the idea of letting Manuel finish the season as the team's manager, but he felt the team owed Manuel some honesty when he asked if his contract would be renewed for the 2014 season. The decision was ultimately Amaro's to make, though Montgomery did request that the move be pushed back two days. In Cooperstown at the time Amaro called him with the decision, Montgomery wanted to be back in Philadelphia when it happened.
Asked about the free agent market, Montgomery noted that it's difficult to supplement a team via free agency due to the recent rash of contract extensions for talented young players. He added that the Andrew McCutchens of the world are signing long-term deals through their primes, and Montgomery thinks it's good for the game to see young stars want to stay with one team for their whole career.
Gelb and Montgomery also discuss the Phillies' likely renewal of a television contract with Comcast, Carlos Ruiz's popularity and the emergence of Domonic Brown and Darin Ruf in an excellent Q&A that's worth reading from start to finish.