There may or may not actually be any cardinal rules when it comes to sports — the line is always getting blurred. As a general rule of thumb, however, little good ever comes from players or management taking shots at the fans. You know, the paying customers who help float your salary.
Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. talked with CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury and gave sort of a “state of the team” kind of thing. Trading high-priced veterans like Ryan Howard, Jonathan Papelbon and Cole Hamels came up. As did talk about bringing up players in the minors to Citizen’s Bank Park. This interview would likely not have made a blip outside of Philadelphia except for Amaro disparaging Phillies’ fans in the process.
"“I think we’re going to be conservative,” he said. That often does not sit well with fans who want to see the Phillies be aggressive with their prospects. “They don’t understand the game,” Amaro said. “They don’t understand the process. There’s a process. And then they bitch and complain because we don’t have a plan. There’s a plan in place and we’re sticking with the plan. We can’t do what’s best for the fan. We have to do what’s best for the organization so the fan can reap the benefit of it later on. That’s the truth.”"
Uhhh … not smart.
Fans might be irrational, demanding and always in win-now mode, but saying they don’t understand the game and complain is simply an unwise statement for an executive to make in a public, on-the-record setting. What is to be gained by saying that, even if it bears a kernel of truth? Beyond that it’s not as if Amaro is exactly beloved in Philadelphia at the moment to begin with. He’s also the person who oversaw the Phillies transform from World Series contenders to among the worst teams in the sport, saddled with brutal long-term contracts.
If nothing else Philadelphia talk radio is going to be fun on Tuesday.