Following The 40: Prime Directives

November 6th, 2015 by Mike H. | Filed under Baseball, General, MLB, Phillies.

Team President Andy MacPhail, General Manager Matt Klentak, and John Middleton

As expected, the Phillies selected the successor to Ruben Amaro Jr.’s throne. It really seemed like a formality that Team President Andy MacPhail would choose Matt Klentak based off of previous work experience in Baltimore where he served as Director of Baseball Operations. During his introductory statement, Klentak laid forth a set of prime directives that the Phillies would abide by under his watch.

  • Discipline
  • Connectivity
  • Information
  • Culture
  • Winning

Just reading his quotes as to how he will lead this team going forward gives me a sense of hope. Granted a potentially strong base of prospects relatively close to the majors backed by an ownership group with rather deep pockets doesn’t hurt, but talking about discipline, which wasn’t one of his predecessor’s finest qualities, should also let the fans know not to expect the huge splash….yet. What Amaro never learned in his time as General Manager was a lesson he could have learned from Taylor Swift (yes that Taylor Swift). That band aids don’t fix bullet holes. Roy Oswalt and Hunter Pence were both reactionary moves that set the franchise back. Both were meant to cover mistakes in getting rid of Cliff Lee and Jayson Werth, but the cost was detrimental in long-term decisions.

Connectivity and Information will work hand in hand as the team re-evaluates how the team is built going forward. The concept of synergy was not a point of strength since Pat Gillick rode off into the sunset, World Series trophy in hand. In fact, it really seemed like one hand didn’t know what the other hand was doing the majority of the time. I’m excited to see what this franchise can become with an analytic weaponry and the payroll to back it up.

Which leads to the last two directives. I believe 2016 will see the Phillies make major splashes, just not ones we’re used to. While the previous regime was always looking for the “white whale”, the new regime has the ability to sustain success. Granted not all of the decisions will be the right ones, but the Phillies will be primed to make a lot of significant ones. The number one overall pick in the First Year Player Draft and the biggest bonus pool in the international spending period that starts July 2nd. A lot of these players won’t contribute heavily to the core of Franco, Nola, Crawford, Thompson, and Williams, but they will sustain and/or supplement it down the road. The best way to build a sense of culture is by acquiring top talent with a strong desire to win. I truly believe that 2016 will be the first step forward out of the darkness, but the hiring of Klentak is the dawn of the new day

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