The Phillies announced before the season that they were officially looking to rebuild, and the organization is currently hanging on to pole position in next year’s draft. With Andy MacPhail taking over as club president and Ruben Amaro Jr. being relieved of his duties as general manager, the organization is expected to find a numbers-savvy GM to guide the its development.
The latest on their search:
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that Athletics AGM Dan Kantrovitz is receiving a second interview from the Phillies (Twitter link). There are others in the wave of second-round interviews as well. Kantrovitz interviewed for the Brewers’ GM slot before Milwaukee hired David Stearns. Kantrovitz has had two stints with the A’s and two with the Cards, serving in various capacities, including assistant GM, director of scouting and director of international scouting.
- MacPhail told Zolecki that while it’d be ambitious to expect a hire before the Phillies’ organizational meetings begin next Monday, we shouldn’t dismiss the possibility that a hire could be announced later next week. Zolecki notes that Angels AGM Matt Klentak, who Zolecki previously reported to be a favorite, has had his first interview. MacPhail hired Klentak as the Orioles’ director of baseball operations back in 2008, making Klentak one of the game’s youngest execs. Zolecki also notes that Ng is not among MacPhail’s top candidates.
- ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick spoke to someone familiar with the Phillies’ GM search that disputed the notion that Picollo has become the front-runner in the search (links to Twitter). Rather, he hears that owner John Middleton’s top preference is former Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. However, Crasnick reminds that Cherington has previously indicated that he does not want to dive right back into another GM opportunity. Crasnick also reported over the weekend (Twitter link) that Beinfest has been informed that he is no longer in the running for the position.
- While the Phillies still have plans to interview about six more candidates, Royals assistant GM J.J. Picollo has emerged as a “heavy favorite” to become the next Philadelphia general manager, reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (Twitter link). The New Jersey native has been connected to the Phillies’ opening previously, though it’s not exactly clear when he initially interviewed for the position. Picollo has held his current post with the Royals since 2008 and been in the organization since 2006. Prior to his time with the Royals, he spent seven years working for the Braves.
- The Phillies have interviewed Cardinals director of player personnel Matt Slater for the position, reports MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince. Slater has been working in front offices for 20 years, beginning as the Orioles’ administrator of scouting from 1995-98, per his bio on the Cardinals’ web site. He also has served in various capacities with the Brewers, Angels and Dodgers in addition to consulting work with Nippon Professional Baseball’s Orix Buffaloes.
- The Phillies are known to have interviewed Major League Baseball’s vice president of baseball operations Kim Ng and Indians vice president of player personnel Ross Atkins.
- Former Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest has received an interview with the Phillies, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. Beinfest was cut loose from Miami before the 2014 campaign and has not caught on with another organization since. As the Herald previously reported, he is interested in returning to the game.
- The Phils have also interviewed one other candidate, though that person’s identity has not been reported. Philly had hoped to speak with Mike Chernoff of the Indians, but he appears destined to receive an internal promotion. The interview process is expected to pick up after the end of the regular season this weekend.