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December 27, 2012 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
FOR THE first time in 10 years, the Phillies of 2012 failed to finish a season with a winning record. In the days following the season finale, manager Charlie Manuel was placed squarely into the crosshairs of outsiders seeking a fall guy. Manuel, whose contract expires after the 2013 season, watched his bosses promote Triple A manager and rumored major league manager heir apparent Ryne Sandberg to the Phillies' coaching staff. In a news conference days after the season ended with a series of coaching changes, Manuel answered all of the questions correctly, and with confidence, too. He isn't worried about his job security.
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November 2, 2012 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer
ALTHOUGH TEAMS are allowed to sign free agents from other teams beginning 6 days after the World Series - which means midnight on Friday this year - baseball's hot-stove season generally doesn't get any hotter than in early December at the Winter Meetings. But Ruben Amaro Jr. worked quicker than most last year. He had a future Hall of Famer and a four-time All-Star closer outfitted for red pinstripes a week and a half before sitting down for his Thanksgiving dinner. So Amaro should have a new centerfielder signed before most people wake up Saturday morning, right?
SPORTS
July 11, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MILWAUKEE - The trade deadline is 20 days away and Jonathan Papelbon is eager to move on from the Phillies to a team in contention. Asked on Wednesday night if he was ready to move on if a contender came calling, Papelbon gave an affirmative, "Yeah," and added an almost incredulous laugh, too, for effect. Papelbon also said it was "mind-boggling" to him that anyone would want to stay on a last-place team, that it was a "no-brainer" to move on if given the chance. How exactly did his boss react to that?
SPORTS
December 12, 2013 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Roy Halladay's decline, declaring for free agency and then sudden retirement on Monday was a stark reminder of a glaring hole that still remains on the Phillies' roster. The rotation still needs a replacement for Halladay, and starting pitching depth in general. So when rumors of the Phillies listening to trade offers for Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee swirled through the hallways and conference rooms at Walt Disney World's Swan and Dolphin Resort yesterday morning, it was pretty difficult to take them seriously.
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August 22, 1996 | by Paul Hagen, Daily News Sports Writer
As Ruben Amaro's mother keeps reminding him, it's always taken him longer than most of the other kids. "My teeth came in late. I didn't reach puberty until I was 14," he said, smiling as he leaned against the bat rack before the Phillies' game last night at Dodger Stadium. And maybe that's it. Maybe that's why Amaro, who seemed less likely than, say, Julio Peguero to resurface in a Phillies uniform after he was traded to the Cleveland Indians after the 1993 season, has not only made it back but carved out a niche for himself.
SPORTS
June 26, 1993 | by Paul Hagen, Daily News Sports Writer
When Ruben Amaro was called up from Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on June 17, word was he would get some starts against lefthanded pitching while Wes Chamberlain was on the disabled list. For more than a week, it didn't work out that way. Jim Eisenreich was swinging a hot bat. Manager Jim Fregosi kept him in the lineup. Last night, though, Fregosi decided Eisenreich needed a rest. Amaro, hitless in three at-bats as a pinch-hitter since his arrival, got the start he had been waiting for. And he didn't whiff it. He had the first four-hit game of his major league career, including a two- run homer in the eighth that lifted the Phillies to an 8-6 win over the Pirates at Three Rivers Stadium.
SPORTS
November 17, 2011 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
MILWAUKEE - The caveat was necessary for a man who has dealt away aces and top prospects, players thought untouchable - a label that, truthfully, does not exist in baseball and certainly not in Ruben Amaro Jr.'s mind. "I can't say we'd never, ever trade anybody," Amaro said. In an empty ballroom at the Pfister Hotel, the Phillies general manager flashed a trademark smirk as his meetings with the rest of baseball's deal-makers neared completion. Amaro still has about $60 million to spend this winter, and that is his priority.
SPORTS
July 17, 2013 | By Matt Gelb and Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writers
NEW YORK - Bill Giles watches from the periphery now; he attends the All-Star Game every summer to represent the National League as its honorary president. He is the chairman of the Phillies, although his role is reduced with age. And yet Giles is the soul of the Phillies, the man who organized the current ownership group that bought the team for $32.5 million in 1981. He sees a team in limbo. "I used to be very involved in making decisions and working with the general manager, and this is the most difficult last two weeks in July I have ever seen," Giles, 78, said.
SPORTS
August 11, 2012 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Ruben Amaro Jr. recently engaged a few of his rival general managers in discussions, the topic of third base arose, and they all reached one conclusion: It is a difficult position to fill. "Somebody's going to play there," Amaro said. "We'll have to try to figure it out. " The Phillies, theoretically, have three lineup holes to fill for 2013. Amaro has effectively guaranteed Domonic Brown one of the outfield jobs, leaving two others, plus third base. The rest of the infield is locked up, assuming the team exercises catcher Carlos Ruiz's $5 million option.
SPORTS
December 20, 2012 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
THE BULK of the work is finished, with a third baseman (Michael Young), a centerfielder (Ben Revere), a setup man (Mike Adams) and a fifth starter (John Lannan) all outfitted in Phillies red before Christmas. But Ruben Amaro Jr. isn't finished with his offseason shopping, even if he did allow the possibility of going to spring training in 2 months with the current roster. "It's very possible that we have the answers internally," Amaro said of what would appear to be a glaring need for a reliable, productive, veteran bat for the outfield.
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SPORTS
September 30, 2014 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
It was a beautiful day for baseball, unless, of course, it was that brand of baseball the Phillies have tortured their fans with the last two seasons. Not even clear skies and comfortable temperatures could erase the stench that has saturated Citizens Bank Park for far too long. There was no formal state-of-the-team address by general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. or acting team president Pat Gillick before or after the season's final game. None was needed. We've known for months that this was another lost season for the team with the third-highest payroll in baseball, and we've been assured for quite some time that the general manager will remain in charge of personnel operations going forward.
SPORTS
September 25, 2014
MIAMI - Jonathan Papelbon returned to active duty yesterday, with his seven-game suspension coming to an end. Nine days earlier, Papelbon got into an altercation with umpire Joe West at Citizens Bank Park after the volatile closer made an obscene gesture (or equipment adjustment, according to the pitcher) in the direction of fans following a blown save. Both Amaro and manager Ryne Sandberg confirmed that Papelbon remains the team's closer. Even in Philadelphia this weekend, if the situation calls for a save, and despite what could be an ugly South Philadelphia return for Papelbon.
SPORTS
September 25, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
MIAMI - On Monday, Ruben Amaro Jr. was in the Dominican Republic with a contingent of Phillies baseball operations people to get a firsthand look at slugging outfielder Yasmany Tomas, a Cuban defector. Last week, Amaro was in Japan on another scouting mission. Such is the life of a beleaguered general manager who was given a vote of confidence on his job status repeatedly this season, but is still on the hot seat from Philadelphia sports fans after failing to field a winner for three straight seasons despite having one of the top three payrolls in baseball.
SPORTS
September 12, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
CLIFF LEE made a quick trip to Philadelphia this week for the first of two checkups with doctors this month. Following Tuesday's exam with Phillies team doctor Michael Ciccotti, general mnager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Lee's ailing left elbow has improved. Lee will be checked out again at the end of the season. He is expected to begin throwing in early November, according to Amaro. "We'll see where it goes from there," Amaro said yesterday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. Lee wasn't available for comment.
SPORTS
September 4, 2014 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
ATLANTA - The final call isn't likely to come for another month, when the season officially comes to an end, but the growing expectation for most of the summer was that Ruben Amaro Jr. would return for his seventh season as the Phillies' general manager in 2015. Team president David Montgomery, currently on medical leave, spoke to a group of fans at Citizens Bank Park 2 weeks ago and said Amaro was not on the hot seat. Amaro, when asked about it himself in recent months, hasn't ever given the notion that he was particularly worried about his job security.
SPORTS
September 4, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
ATLANTA - Before he ascended to interim president of the Phillies, Pat Gillick spoke with Ruben Amaro Jr. two or three times a week on the phone. Gillick, a Hall of Fame executive, served from his Seattle home as a sounding board for Amaro. Little will change now that Gillick, 77, is Amaro's boss. "Ruben and I mutually agree on most decisions that we make," Gillick said Tuesday at Turner Field. "Ruben is very inclusive on any decisions that we make for the ball club. But right now, if there's something I might have a different opinion, I'll certainly voice that opinion, and we'll talk it through and try to make what we think is the correct decision.
SPORTS
August 31, 2014 | BY JAKE KAPLAN, Daily News Staff Writer kaplanj@phillynews.com
NEW YORK - A little more than 3 hours before last night's first pitch, Ruben Amaro Jr. addressed the players gathered in the visiting team clubhouse at Citi Field. The Phillies' general manager reiterated the developments of Thursday, that in the wake of David Montgomery's medical leave of absence, Pat Gillick will be interim team president. "We'll go about our business status quo," Amaro told a group of reporters a few minutes later. "I'll report to Pat. [Manager Ryne Sandberg]
SPORTS
August 22, 2014 | By John Smallwood, Daily News Columnist
IN MY SMALL OPINION . . . Timing can be everything, and, frankly, this is a bad time for Phillies president David Montgomery to have given general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. another public vote of confidence. Obviously, what Montgomery thinks behind closed doors will differ from what he says publicly about the team's future, but it was irresponsible for Montgomery to have told a group of fans the other day that "[Amaro] is not on the hot seat. " When your major league club is 15 games under .500 with the third-highest payroll in baseball and your minor league system is devoid of promising prospects, no one can be off the "hot seat" - especially not the person overseeing the entire organization.
SPORTS
August 18, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN FRANCISCO - Ruben Amaro Jr. asked a small group of reporters to follow him. He found a spot in the empty stands, hours before another Phillies game, and talked for 30 minutes about the missteps that led to another failure. "Listen, I'm the GM of the club, so I fully expect to take heat for it," Amaro said. "I'm the one who is making the decisions on player personnel. I'm accountable for the things that have happened. I have not had a very good year; our team did not have a very good year.
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