The Philadelphia Phillies have progressively declined since the 2011 season when they won 102 games. We often forget how recent it was when the Phillies were relevant, though the last few years have certainly masked the glory of recent history. On pace for only 70 wins this season, the Phillies’ fans have been critical of general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. despite the Phillies’ president supporting him publicly.
Amaro has did very little for the team in recent years other than signing aging hometown players to long-term extensions. Contracts such as those given to Ryan Howard and Jonathan Papelbon have restricted the the team’s flexibility in facilitating trades. Other contracts with vesting options and no-trade clauses have attributed to this as well, such as those signed by A.J. Burnett, Chase Utley and Cliff Lee.
To be positive, the Phillies do have prospects in their organization who should be ready for MLB competition by year 2016.
Despite all the criticism, team president David Montgomery has supported Amaro and his decisions from previous years. With the team salary of the Phillies being third-highest in the league this season, the team should be competitive in the NL East. Yet, there is little hope for immediate success. The Phillies just have not made enough trades to change the team around within two seasons.
While most Phillies fans want Amaro out and have wanted that for a while now, Montgomery will likely either give Amaro another year or two to see if the Phillies can turn it around, or he will allow him to be the GM during the rebuilding process.