Ranking the NL East: General Managers

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Aug 16, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr prior to playing the Los Angeles Dodgers at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

3. Philadelphia Phillies – Ruben Amaro, Jr.

Amaro has been with the Phillies ever since his playing days for them ended back in 1998. He served 10 seasons as an assistant GM before being promoted to the General Manager role in November of 2008. During that time, Amaro was part of a staff that helped put together a team that won one World Series, two National League pennants, and five NL East titles.

It’s an impressive resume, to be sure. Acquiring the type of talent that it takes to put together the sort of run that the Phillies went on from 2007 to 2011 is no easy task. The Phillies were also just a handful of games away from having two or three titles instead of just one.

The problem is how Amaro has apparently managed the team ever since he took over as the fulltime general manager. While he managed to ride the talented core of players he helped put together with Ed Wade and Patrick Gillick to a few more successful seasons, the team soon started falling into a rapid state of decline.

The Phillies have won just 81, 73, and 73 games over the past three seasons while dropping from third to fourth to dead last in the NL East. Amaro has failed to replace his aging core of star players, opting instead to allow the franchise’s chances fade with their skill sets. He just recently traded Jimmy Rollins, but Chase Utley and Ryan Howard are still hanging around.

There’s still time for the Phillies to return to prominence and competitiveness, but for now, it looks like they will hang around the NL East basement for a few more years. And if they do, it’s safe to say Amaro’s successes might not have been all his own.

Next: Number 2