At a 2:30 P.M. ET press conference Monday at Citizens Bank Park, the Philadelphia Phillies announced the hiring of Andy MacPhail to become the team's president of baseball operations in 2016.
MacPhail will serve as an assistant to current president Pat Gillick for the rest of the season before taking over the role. He plans to evaluate the front office and make any necessary changes, including the future of GM Ruben Amaro Jr.
The hiring of MacPhail appears on paper to be a step in the right direction for a Phillies team that has plummeted to the worst in the Major Leagues. MacPhail has experience leading three clubs, including two World Series championships with the Twins and two more postseason births with the Cubs.
Spending time in the Orioles organization through 2011, MacPhail is credited with making a plethora of moves to bring the team to where it is today, including acquiring Adam Jones, Chris Tillman, Chris Davis, Tommy Hunter, and J.J. Hardy.
Since last being involved in baseball with Baltimore, MacPhail has been a world traveler and has not paid close attention to the game. He admitted that he will need to get caught back up with the current ways of running a team, including sabermetrics.
To the delight of many Phillies fans, MacPhail mentioned that he wanted to get more involved using sabermetrics as he takes over the helm. Philadelphia has often been called "old school" and has not been able to embrace the same statistics that many of their counterparts have used successfully.
Here is what Phillies principal owner John Middleton said about MacPhail at the press conference today.
Andy brings an uncommon blend of old school experience and new age thinking. … In 1986, Andy was the youngest GM in the history of Major League Baseball when he served in that role for the Twins. The following year, he became the youngest GM to win a World Series title. When the Orioles hired him eight years ago, Andy became the first president of baseball operations in Major League Baseball. During his tenure in Baltimore, he greatly expanded the use of statistical analysis in player evaluations. That’s the new age thinking.”
MacPhail will have his hands full with the worst team in baseball, as he will likely decide the fates of Amaro Jr. and the next manager in Philadelphia this offseason.