Dear Pat Gillick,
Thank you for taking a really good team, which Ed Wade had developed, and adding the pieces that he was unable to find in order to bring the Phillies to a championship level. You found unwanted gems like Shane Victorino and Jayson Werth. You built a decent bench and a great bullpen. We are forever indebted to you for the 2008 World Series. However, don’t try to take advantage of that.
For starters, don’t tell us how difficult it is to remain competitive in Major League Baseball when teams like the Giants, Cardinals, and A’s continue to do it with far less money.
Don’t come out and say that the Phillies are in a rebuilding mode and will not be competitive until 2017. Not after you said “”A tweak here or a tweak there might make you a little more competitive” a little over a month ago (see here).
Don’t tell us that Ruben is the right guy for the GM job of rebuilding the utter mess he has created. We don’t believe you no matter how many World Series rings you have. He was given the keys to a Ferrari with the budget of a Rolls Royce and turned the franchise into a Nova.
My season tickets cost me a good chunk of my annual disposable income, respect that. The fans and consumers of the Philadelphia Phillies don’t want Ruben back. You’ve insulted me as a season ticket holder, fan, and rational human being by telling me he and you have made the “right decisions.”
As trade rumors swirl about Hamels and Byrd and others, we as a fan base cannot and do not trust Ruben in procuring talent in return, unless of course they are the top talent in a stacked organization such as Chicago’s Bryant and Russell. Those are trades I could make. Any trades now are vital to the future of the franchise and Ruben has proven himself unable to get talent in return.
The problem isn’t that the core is aging. Everyone’s core ages. His trades are the problem. It’s that he dealt Victorino for nothing. He gave up players for Hunter Pence, who Ruben should have scouted better since Pence wasn’t a fit for Philadelphia, and then got nothing in return from dealing Pence to the Giants. The players given up to Houston for nothing (Pence) would be a nice group of young talent to add to the roster. He got nothing in return for Pence. So, in essence, he gave up Cosart, Singleton and Santana for kicks. He got nothing in return for trading Cliff Lee.
With all due respect, if you were involved in making these decisions, as you have said you were, and insist they were the “right decisions,” then perhaps you are not best qualified for judging the current Phillies situation and the performance of the GM. That seems like a conflict of interest.
Also, your track record indicates that you leave franchises a mess after achieving a certain level of success. You resigned from the Blue Jays in 94 and it took until 2006 for them to finish higher than 3rd place-12 years! You reached the playoffs with the Orioles in 97. You resigned in 98. They didn’t have a winning season until 2012-14 years! You took the Mariners to back-to-back playoffs in 2000-2001. They haven’t been the playoffs since-13 years!
You are truly a baseball legend. You helped break the drought of Philadelphia championships. Thank you! However, this situation may be beyond your skills. We, the fans and the city, have little remaining confidence in you and zero in Ruben.
We need a new GM.