Amaro: “Development is important, winning is more important” – Phillies Nation

Amaro: “Development is important, winning is more important”

Amaro gave positive reports on Doc, Howard, and Utley and stated D. Young will play only right field in Reading. Photo by: Ian Riccaboni

The Reading Fightin’ Phils hosted the Phillies Winter Caravan tonight. Among the guests of honor: 2012 Eastern League MVP Darin Ruf , Reading alum Justin De Fratus, and Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. Amaro, who just an hour and change earlier announced the signing of Delmon Young in Philadelphia, made the trip to Reading and spoke to reporters.

“Development is important, winning is more important,” was perhaps Amaro’s most eye-brow raising quote when asked if signing Young would allow them to ease younger players into Major League playing time. Amaro stated that Young will only play right field for the Phillies, citing internal Phillies reports and Young’s desire to do so as reasons. Young has not played right field since 2007.

Other points of interest:

  • Amaro has received positive reports regarding the health of Roy Halladay, Ryan Howard, and Chase Utley. Amaro said Halladay and Kyle Kendrick have begun throwing bullpen sessions in Florida
  • All Phillies outfielders currently on the active roster will have a shot to crack the Opening Day Roster, including Rule 5 selection Ender Inciarte, who Amaro said “is a guy who will be in the mix; we will take a look at him and see what we got”
  • Amaro is very confident about the Phillies bullpen headed into 2013, is excited about the plethora of young arms they have, and believes they will be near the top should Mike Adams perform “anywhere near where he was last year”


  1. Righteous Robert

    January 22, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    I wrote this in the Harry Kalas tribute but it was closed so I’;m posting here:

    I was living on the West Coast circa 1987 to 1992.
    I attended Phillies games in LA and San Diego
    and attended Mike Schmidt’s last game in SF in May 1989
    on a Sunday afternoon and the previous game on Friday night.
    Probably one of a few Phillies Phans at that last game.

    But when I went to these games I made an effort to get Harry, Whitey
    and or Andy Musser a note telling them to read it on air which when
    I was living back east I always heard them read those notes
    especially of Phillies Phans visiting those areas.

    They are all gone now and I’ll always miss them.
    I’m attending the Philly Sports Writers Banquet on Monday January 28th
    my 5th in a row.
    The Key Note Speaker and Emcee at my first Banquet in 2009
    and who did it every year was Harry Kalas.
    It would be his Last.

    Baltimore Bob

  2. bacardipr

    January 22, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    Amaro was not comfortable going into the season with too many unknowns. At the same token I dont think he wanted or could sign any of the bigger name OF’ers. I have a feeling this is some sort of transition going on. In the midst they will make one more final run at been WFC before a possible rebuilding of this team occurs. I know they will be critics no matter what. At the same time if Brown/Ruf was to fail, those same critics would be saying Amaro should of signed a veteran OF’er. Whilst Young does have his issues the risk is minimal. He could always be traded or released etc. This should come of no surprise as both Uncle C and Amaro have been hesitant to give young players a chance. That is unless their hands are tied.

  3. Jaron B

    January 22, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    With D. Young playing right field, Brown will have to spend some time in left & a little time in center. Not the ideal scenario with Brown (I want him to get 300 PAs before the trade deadline), but at least he has the defensive versatility (though not the best skill) to compensate for lost playing time in RF and Young can be let go without hurting the Phils in the luxury tax regime (low risk, moderate reward).

    • Jaron B

      January 23, 2013 at 12:30 am

      And with an aging core of players, this philosophy of emphasizing winning over development is dangerous, especially since the Phils made a late run at the 2nd wild card with many young guys on the roster.

  4. George

    January 23, 2013 at 9:59 am

    In the major leagues, I think winning almost has to be emphasized over development. Non-winners don’t usuallly have as many fans in attendance, and with no attendance there’s less money to develop future winners. Even draft picks and international signings cost millions.

    If your farm system is strong, that’s where the true development takes place. Guys like Utley Rollins, Howard, and Hamels were pretty far along even before they hit the majors.

  5. Jeff T

    January 23, 2013 at 10:22 am

    I take issue with the notion that these things are mutually exclusive. Development (if done properly) leads to winning. Signing Delmon Young to take AB’s away from Dom is counterproductive IMHO

    • Jaron B

      January 23, 2013 at 2:17 pm

      They definitely are not mutually exclusive and the Phils’ problem is calling up prospects at the wrong time: Brown’s early call-up is a good example; some say that Hamels, Howard, Utley & Rollins were called up a hair late and others wanted Cloyd & Ruf up here in mid-May.

      We now have a lot of young talent that’s just itching to prove themselves as major leaguers (and some are only a year away), and it is up to Rube & Cholly/ Sandberg to give them that chance.

  6. Dave P

    January 23, 2013 at 10:55 am

    It shouldn’t be a surprise that a professional team’s primary goal is to win games. If a team’s primary goal was to develop players we’d be more like the astros.

  7. Ryne Duren

    January 23, 2013 at 11:01 am

    i’ve said it in the past, and i’ll say it again they are in the preliminating phase of a rebuild. bacardipr mentioned it in his comment that they were on some sort of a transition. well he’s right. they are, but they are trying to stay competitive while the process goes on. i’m not crazy about D young. but he’s 27, low cost, low risk. i think they’ve finally come to their senses and realize that brown isn’t going to be what they thought he’d be.
    with that said. i’ll say that brown still could becpme a decent player, he’s still relatively young and also insurance depth wise. if ruff doesn’t pan out. ( which i don’t think will happen) that makes brown a good insurace policy cause he can play both corner spots and young provides a RH power bat that ruff would’ve been. so in a sense it’s a smart move on rubes part.
    now if they weren’t in a transition, then they would have signed a big name! their history proves that. but with some position players in the minor getting closer and the core getting older and with many question marks they have to make moves like this. i personally don’t think the transition will take long because the phils are willing to spend money on what they need. there’s no reason to spend big bucks at this juncture because of the aging core. once the younger guys start to filter up and replace these guys the brass will assess what they need and go after it. but in the meantime they’re trying to stay competitive for us.

    some might not agree with me but it’s just migh gut feeling on this

  8. Lefty

    January 23, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    The question I heard was-
    Does it give you a little bit maybe more breathing room in developing some of these younger guys do you think?

    The answer I heard was –
    Ah, development is important but winning is more important. So uh this is about trying to win, and it’s about putting guys in a position to compete. They gotta compete and they gotta perform to play on our, on our (yes he said it twice) club, so kind of see who the best people are to help our club win the most games.

    This is just my personal opinion, but I don’t see this answer as eye brow raising.

    • schmenkman

      January 23, 2013 at 2:04 pm

      Yeah, agree, Lefty.

    • Lefty

      January 23, 2013 at 3:19 pm

      I was remiss in not adding that I meant no disrespect to Ian, or any of these guys whose hard work I really appreciate reading. I just disagree this time.

      BTW Schmenk, Thanks for your real good piece the other day on 95 wins, I don’t comment there, but wanted to tell you it was thought provoking.

      • schmenkman

        January 23, 2013 at 3:35 pm

        Much appreciated.

  9. Mazinman

    January 23, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    I fail to see what the big deal is. Of course winning is more important than development. You want to develop your farm system to be able to win. You don’t want to be the Royals and have a good prospects but never win.

  10. Bob in Bucks

    January 23, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    My response – duh!

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