SBD/September 12, 2013/Franchises

Phillies' Montgomery Backs GM Amaro Despite Consecutive Down Seasons

Amaro gets the front office's vote of confidence to rebuild the Phillies
Phillies President David Montgomery "endorsed" GM Ruben Amaro Jr. and said that he "harbored no regrets about the way" manager Charlie Manuel's firing was handled, according to Matt Gelb of the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER. Montgomery added that "no further changes are required in the front office, even after two straight failed seasons." He said that Amaro is the exec "who will lead a renaissance" with the Phillies. Montgomery stated, "Ruben is our general manager." He "cited Amaro's willingness to consider a variety of opinions before making a decision." Montgomery added that "discussions continue with Manuel about a potential front-office job." But Gelb writes even if Manuel "lands elsewhere, Montgomery thought it important to preserve a relationship with the deposed manager." Montgomery said that Amaro "kept him informed during the days leading up to the managerial change," adding that team ownership "was not involved." Montgomery: "I'm a chain-of-command person. I believe the clubhouse is the manager's. He should be the presence there. Ruben's responsibility is all of baseball operations, including the decision on the manager. My role as president and CEO is to make the global decisions, including the GM decision and other senior personnel. If you get out of that chain of command, you can have problems." Meanwhile, Gelb reports negotiations with Comcast on the team's "momentous" TV contract "have begun." The team's current TV deal expires after the '15 season. The Phillies for now are "contractually limited to talks with Comcast," but will "have an opportunity to solicit other offers later." A "reunion with Comcast is expected." Montgomery: "We are having some discussions. I don't know how fruitful they will be" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 9/12).
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