Yesterday, Ruben Amaro got attention for calling the Phillies a ‘ mediocre’ team,when speaking to ESPN’s Jayson Stark. I used my article reacting to that quote, to circle it back to why Ruben Amaro has no business being the general manager of this team past 2014. Even though the public, and even most pundits, share that opinion, I have never gotten the sense that Amaro is on his way out, because I think he’s someone who has worked his way up through the organization, and is still viewed highly by the rest of the Phillies decision-makers.
Perhaps the baseball Gods see the baseball passion of this city being driven into the ground, largely due to the poor decisions of one man, and are prepared to give us a gift.
Sports Illustrated suggested this month that high-profile possibilities like Joe Torre, Bob Costas, George F. Will and Dick Ebersol are unrealistic because of their age or lack of interest in the gig. Other potential candidates include MLB execs such as COO Rob Manfred as well as Dodgers owner Stan Kasten and Phillies GM Rubén Amaro Jr.
That came from a New York Times article, that suggested that Bob Iger-the CEO of Disney and ESPN-is the MLB’s preferred pick to be the next commissioner. Unfortunately for the league, Iger’s contract with Disney may ultimately prevent the move from being possibly. Frankly, I’m not beating down someone’s door who allows ESPN First Take and Dan Le Batard is Highly Questionable to be broadcasted, to take control of the MLB.
As for Amaro, this report is very vague, because it lists his name, as well as Rob Manfred and Stan Kasten, but doesn’t really give any backing as to why they would be candidates. I guess the case for the other two makes itself better than a guy who is considered by his fanbase to be the worst general manager in the league.
Still, why not let Amaro become the commissioner if the situation presents itself? Not only would it assure that he is out of the Phillies’ front office, but what’s the worst he can do? The MLB has a top-flight drug testing program now and full instant-replay, so I’m not worried that the next commissioner will have too many major tasks facing him, at least not immediately.
Bud Selig has been in office for 20 plus seasons, and the idea of Amaro being commissioner for that long kind of scares me, but I’d rather see him be the next commissioner than George W. Bush, who some people have actually suggested.
Joe Torre and Tony La Russa would have been my two front-runners, but Torre may or may not have interest and La Russa took a job in the Diamondbacks organization recently, which rules him out. And in the case that the other top candidates decide to pass on the chance to be the MLB’s head man, commissioner Amaro sounds a lot better than general manager Amaro to me.