- With “caught up in the moment” speculation leading to votes of confidence for Ruben Amaro remaining as Phillies GM, how ’bout a little reality check with looking at the man’s ledger while in charger.
He took over following the 2008 World Series victory. Since then, the team has taken a step down every stinkin’ season. They lost the Series in 2009. They lost in the NLCS in 2010. They lost in the NLDS in 2011. They finished .500 in 2012, in third place in the NL East, a full 17 games behind division-winning Washington. They finished in fourth place in the division in 2013. They finished in last place in the division in 2014.
In 2015, only a post-AGS break 13-4 surge has saved them from a collision course with 100-plus losses.
Granted, Amaro hardly is the only person who factored in the franchise’s demise. But he has been the face of the organization and he has been the one pulling the trigger on the moves that sent the Phillies on such a consistent, rapid decline.
Unless you enjoy a comedy routine of bad decisions coupled with pompous indignation – and, frankly, I’ve discovered I sometimes do courtesy of Ruben’s Reign of Error – it would be wise to step back and realize that a week or two of production by prospects acquired from long-overdue trades does not erase seven years of piss-pour player-personnel management.
- While we’re at it, can we stop talking in terms of what the Phillies can get in a trade for Chase Utley, that the club may be showcasing him in order to get some “value” in return? He is DONE. Been DONE. Time as a tradeable commodity DONE. Now, forever, always. He will not be regaining his youth, or health from his youth, and suddenly spark interest from other teams.
Besides, even if he did, you know what you, as Philly sports fans, would be doing? You’d be proclaiming that “we” shouldn’t, just couldn’t, trade him. That he was too valuable to move, that he meant too much to the franchise, to the city.
- In a story set to hit newsstands in mid-August, ESPN the Mag profiles Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenburg’s enigmatic career with the Nittany Lions and how he projects at the next level. Despite pointing out flaws in his game, or performance, the article’s main premise is to promote the youngster as the next great QB prospect for the NFL Draft. I, for one, agree with it.
His arm, his grasp of what’s going on, his ability to move on to the next play and, frankly, his athleticism, which I find to be superior to what is intimated in the piece, won me over as early as the first month of his freshman season. Plus, he meets all the tangibles: size, smarts and “can make all the throws.”
- In sticking with ESPN, am starting to get a little miffed (albeit not surprised as to why) that the “sports leader” has counted down the back half of its top 100 college football players for 2015 and Temple’s Tyler Matakevich has yet to be mentioned. Not good. The kid has three seasons of 100 or more tackles, would become just the seventh Division I player to have four if he matches that number this season, and stands as the current NCAA career stops leader of those set to play this fall.
- Jack Kerwin | firstname.lastname@example.org