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Ruben Amaro: the Phillies want to keep Cole Hamels for a long, long time

Dec 7, 2011, 3:34 PM EDT

Pittsburgh Pirates v Philadelphia Phillies Getty Images

I just got done interviewing Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro.  The interview will air on NBC SportsTalk tonight on Versus at 6PM Eastern.  In the meantime, though, I can give you the gist:

  • Amaro said that he does not comment on rumors and thus didn’t have anything to say about the Gio Gonzalez stuff that was floating around last night, but he did say that whatever else they do, it will not impact what the future of Cole Hamels.
  • This is significant, because part of that Gonzalez stuff was tied to the notion of having him replace Hamels in the event he were to be traded or to walk when he becomes a free agent.  To the contrary, Amaro told me, the team wants Cole Hamels to be a member of the Philadelphia Philles for a long, long time, and they would address an extension for him “at the appropriate time.”
  • The team’s clear priority right now is “addressing the shortstop position,” which is obviously a reference to the team’s reported imminent re-signing of Jimmy Rollins. I tried to bait him a bit by mentioning the Brewers’ reported interest in Rollins. Amaro — because he’s smooth — gave a sly smile and said “I can’t comment on what the Brewers are doing.”
  • He acknowledged that it was tough balance to address the flaws that were exposed in the team during the playoffs without screwing up what worked so well for 162 games. He’s confident, however, that team health — specifically Chase Utley and Hunter Pence — will be a big key to helping an offense that looked overmatched in the playoffs. Pitching, he said, is obviously still this team’s strength; finally
  • Amaro reiterated what had been previously reported: Ryan Howard, at present, is only expected to miss about the first month of the season and that some combination of Jim Thome and existing parts would fill the void in the big man’s absence.

I did not ask him about Domonic Brown because I heard that Amaro is capable of Jedi mind control and would use it on me if I suggested that the kid needs a freakin’ chance to play. After all, Keaton once said “I don’t believe in God, but I’m afraid of him.” Well I believe in God, and the only thing that scares me is Ruben Amaro being mad at me.

Tune in to NBC SportsTalk on Versus at 6PM Eastern to see my interview with Ruben Amaro.

  1. djpostl - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:36 PM

    Kind of a no-brainer on that lead in there Craig…but yeah, who wouldn’t. Maybe this dumbass shouldn’t have gone and paid twice as much for Papelbum as he could have gotten Bell for though.

    Why isn’t this guy being skewered for that kind of a move in a market where a dozen or more closers of varying abilities were available as Free Agents and another 4 or more through trades? He is aware of the concept of a buyer’s market, right?

    • mattjg - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:40 PM

      RAJ is being skewered for the Papelbon deal, at least on the parts of the internet I frequent. He’s willing to overpay to make a big splash, which is fine until, oh next year, when the Phillies will have lots of free agents to resign and lots of money tied up in agin players.

  2. mattjg - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    The only reason the Phillies aren’t going to re-sign Rollins is because Amaro will announce tonight that he signed Jose Reyes EVEN THOUGH HE’S ALREADY A MARLIN. That’s just how good Ruben Amaro, Jr. is.

    • felser - Dec 7, 2011 at 4:22 PM

      or acquired Hanley Ramirez….

  3. Chris Fiorentino - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    “To the contrary, Amaro told me, the team wants Cole Hamels to be a member of the Philadelphia Philles for a long, long time, and they would address an extension for him “at the appropriate time.””

    In other words…
    “These are not the droids you are looking for…move along”

    • cur68 - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:52 PM

      I bet the words Craig feared the most in that interview were “I find your lack of faith…disturbing, Calcaterra…”

      • Chris Fiorentino - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:56 PM

        “Apology accepted, Mr. Calcaterra…you are in command now, Mr. Freeman”

        Thump…(Craig falls over dead, as dead as this joke has become)

  4. Jonny 5 - Dec 7, 2011 at 3:53 PM

    Craig, were you able to absorb any of his swagger while you were so close to him? That could change your life you know….

  5. sasquash20 - Dec 7, 2011 at 4:04 PM

    Usual Suspects shout out! I love that movie. Cole Hamels should be locked up long term. He will be the only valuable trade piece in 2-4 years when the Phillies current run has run its course. Then you unload stud 30ish year old Cole Hamels for a bunch of prospects. Doc will be done by then, probably Lee as well. This team is old and doesn’t have munch in the minors. Stay all in for next 2-4 years then sell the farm and rebuild.

    • Jonny 5 - Dec 7, 2011 at 4:18 PM

      Craig is a dead ringer for Verbal Kint/ Soza. Dead. Ringer.

    • somekat - Dec 7, 2011 at 9:46 PM

      Phils don’t have much offense in the minors, but they do still have a bunch of good pitching prospects. Unfortunately, they are still A ball guys. I would think the plan would be than in 4-5 years when Lee and Halladay are leaving, the young guys would be able to take their spot, with Hamels as the anchor

      • somekat - Dec 7, 2011 at 9:48 PM

        Hit the reply button too soon

        To conclude, as long as they are willing to spend what they are, they can replenish the O through free agency. Just take smart moves and good decisions (like refusing a 5th, and hopefully 4th, year for Rollins)

  6. aclassyguyfromaclassytown - Dec 7, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    So was it RAJ who really masterminded the take down of New Yorks finest taxi cab service? The real life Keyser Soza.

  7. mojosmagic - Dec 7, 2011 at 7:32 PM

    D Brown needs 500 AB at the triple A level coached by Ryan Sandberg. One more year and he will be great.

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