The Phillies are eyeing longtime baseball executive Andy MacPhail as a potential new leader for the franchise, reports Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com. The specific role in which the Phillies are interested is yet unclear, but team president Pat Gillick has said in the past that he does not intend to hold his current role for a particularly lengthy term.
MacPhail would be more than qualified to serve as the club’s president, as his resume is extensive and impressive. The 63-year-old was the general manager of the Twins from 1985-94, during which time the team won its first two (and only) World Series titles, in 1987 and 1991. MacPhail left the Twins to become the president and CEO of the Cubs — a role he held until 2006.
After his Cubs career, MacPhail became president of baseball operations for the Orioles, helping to assemble much of the core that’s in place in Baltimore now. MacPhail was at the helm for the O’s when the team made the franchise-altering trade that sent Erik Bedard to Seattle in exchange for a package of talent headlined by Adam Jones and Chris Tillman. MacPhail was also still fronting Baltimore’s baseball ops department when he plucked both Tommy Hunter and Chris Davis from the Rangers in exchange for Koji Uehara. Additionally, he acquired J.J. Hardy from the Twins in exchange for a pair of minor league relievers, neither of whom made much of an impact in Minnesota.
Suffice it to say, MacPhail is a respected baseball mind with a good deal of experience when it comes to rebuilding franchises. As such, he makes for a logical target to help the Phillies in some capacity as they look to retool a franchise that has gone from a lasting power in the NL East to the bottom of the MLB cellar in recent years.
Salisbury notes that it’s not known whether the team would consider bringing on someone like MacPhail during the season. However, Salisbury also keenly notes that even if MacPhail were brought aboard in some form of consulting capacity during the season, that would give him plenty of time to evaluate both the front office and the field staff heading into what could be an offseason that is rife with organizational changes. Doing so would also allow a new hire to have some say in a potential landmark Cole Hamels trade, to say nothing of potential deals involving Jonathan Papelbon, Aaron Harang, Ben Revere, Ryan Howard and others.