Time to Say Goodbye: A Fan’s Perspective – Phillies Nation
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Time to Say Goodbye: A Fan’s Perspective

You know the song “Never Say Goodbye” by Bon Jovi? It seems as if Ruben Amaro Jr. has been listening to that song on repeat for last couple of years. He probably had it playing on his iPod up until today’s 4pm trade deadline concluded.

By now, every Phillies fan knows that the Phillies did not make a single move today, the final day of the non-waiver trade deadline. At this point, a lot of Phillies fans are probably feeling a little bit of confusion and anger. Does RAJ really believe that this same team will have a shot at competing next season? Has he been watching the same team us fans have been watching all season? How about the last couple of seasons? It appears not. Sadly, this current Phillies team will likely be the team we watch again next season, with potentially a couple pieces missing.

Today was the day to make a move. Today was the day to start planning for the future. Today was the right time to start sayingWorld Series: Tampa Bay Rays v Philadelphia Phillies, Game 5 goodbye.

I love the Phillies, and I love their players especially. I basically grew up with this core group of players. I started religiously watching Phillies baseball back in 2004 when CBP first opened. Players like Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Carlos Ruiz, Cole Hamels and Ryan Howard are all I’ve ever known (with a little Abreu, Thome, and Burrell mixed in). These guys are my heros, and helped me find my love for the game of baseball by watching them play everyday. They have broken my heart many times, but they have also given me some of the happiest memories of my life. Memories like Ryan Howard’s ridiculous 2006 where he won both the home run derby and the NL MVP award. Memories like Shane Victorino hitting that dramatic grand slam against CC Sabathia in the 2008 NLDS. Memories like watching Roy Halladay throw a no-hitter in the playoffs against the Reds while I was bedridden with an ACL injury, and of course, memories like watching the entire team dog pile on each other after winning the World Series in 2008. Those memories can never be replaced.

However, there has been a lot of bad recently. The last two and a half seasons of mediocre baseball have been painfully hard to watch, especially considering that as recent as 2009 people around the sport were talking about a potential dynasty after the Phillies made their second consecutive World Series appearance. Despite all the bad, I have stuck with this team because I love them. When a sibling or a relative makes a mistake, do you stop loving them? Of course not. I will never stop loving them, but I can be angry with them.

The fact that not a single move was made today is unacceptable. Sure they can still make a move before the August 31st waiver deadline, but the time to make a big splash was today, and now that time is over. It is time to move on from this core group of players. RAJ and the front office needs to realize that this team’s winning days are over. Every fan realizes it, so why can’t they? There is no answer right now.

When this team finally decides to move on from the past, and start planning for the future, I’ll still be a fan. I’ll always be a fan of the fightins, but it needs to happen sooner than later.

It is truly time to say goodbye.

20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. lilwengs

    July 31, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    I think we all hoped that this would be the year of the fire sale, but I think we all had it in the backs of our minds that it would not be. The question now is whether we haven’t had a fire sale because of Amaro’s unwillingness to do so or if it is because no teams really want our players.

    • Skylar0201

      July 31, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      It is a combo of both. Amaro brings the word “pathetic” to a *whole* new level!!

      Here I thought Ed Wade was bad…

      Like ESPN said about us just a short while ago as far as what we did: “and nothing. Enjoy 2015, Phillies fans!”

      Amaro is a freaking joke and I want him gone ASAP!!

  2. Scotty Ingerton

    July 31, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    Ryan, a lot of us go back a lot further than 2004. I can only tell you that this mess could take a decade to straighten out and progress won’t be made under Amaro’s tenure. It will take someone from outside the organization to come in and clean house. It’s that bad.

  3. Ken Bland

    July 31, 2014 at 6:35 pm

    Time to say goodbye?

    Not even close.

    Rather, it’s time to sift through the pain in my consciousness of one of these 20 somethings that has barely known the frustration of Phillies baseball portraying an I make the time zones deadline for what’s the law of the land.

    Much the same as someone born in the 1920’s could have bamboozled me for my sometimes impatient perspective on this oft beleaguered franchise in the once in a while phases where they won. It’s called winning induces a lot of know it all thinking, particularly from sources who haven’t endured the full spectrum of the joy of victory, and the agony of defeat..

    But this too shall pass. Barring troubled economic factors underneath, and a parity disguised by a few really good teams running away from the field at the top, creating a likely illusion of anything CAN happen, but usually doesn’t, future generations will, in the spirit of humanity, and maybe even dinosaurs absolutely repeat the errs of our forefathers, or as Ray Rice might now say, our forefathers, and foremothers.

    There is no deadline day. Until baseball is strictly in the archives, there’s always tomorrow. And if a recent birthdate is what’s behind being spared a ton of Phillies history that has made long time ancients wanna develop other hobbies, get some perspective before you scribe a ridiculous piece backboned by a deceptive time in a largely inglorious history.

    In the meantime, continue to be clouded by the frequent poundings of long term abysmiality predictions for this franchise. While a ton of logic leads to that widely held opinion, it’s not impossible that with however many lucky breaks, and right moves, things at least get watchable again. We’ve been there, we’ve seen that. Understand the limits of perspective youth forces upon you before you start reducing this game to a black and white of today’s mode will last foirever. And know that when it does turn, it’ll probably be for reasons that go over the heads of young people who can maybe put K/9 and WHIPS together, but with a foundation of watching winning baseball for most of their fandom wouldn’t understand the influx of time over all this. If this thing were all that easy, a lot of teams would be talking multiple dynasties. Even the great franchises have pretty lengthy down periods, and winning team builders, however skill driven their success is are hardly a dime a dozen.

    Does it mean you support Amaro? Hell no. It means there’s a lot more to this than is realized, and particularly those who could stand a lot more time and perspective before declaring dates of apocalypse.

    2 cents poorer for the perspective.

    • Double Trouble Del

      July 31, 2014 at 7:05 pm

      Eloquently put Ken.

  4. Scotty Ingerton

    July 31, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    “…the whole situation serves as a microcosm of why the Phillies currently find themselves in such dire straits. At no point over the last five years has the current regime offered any proof that they have a good feel for projecting players or markets, or for limiting their exposure to risk. They drastically overpaid for Papelbon. They fooled themselves into thinking they could compete this season, prompting them to hold onto Cliff Lee instead of moving aggressively to deal him in the offseason (or at last year’s trade deadline). They guaranteed A.J. Burnett more money than the Braves ended up guaranteeing Ervin Santana. The latter has a 3.63 ERA, 8.1 K/9, 2.5 BB/9, 0.6 HR/9 in 131 1/3 innings over 20 starts. Think he may have drawn some interest on the trade market (albeit as a two-month rental)?

    No organization can get every decision right. But it should get some of them right. The Philies’ big weakness isn’t the evaluation of talent. It is the valuation of talent. And that’s why they are where we find them today, realizing the mess they’ve created well past the point where it could have been fixed.”

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/sports/phillies/phillies_trade_deadline_2014.html

  5. Brian

    July 31, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Welp. Time to bring back the Eagles chants at Phillies games.

    E-A…

  6. Bellkirk

    July 31, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    I’ve asked before on this board, and I’ll ask again. How does RAJ still have a job? In what universe is his (lack of) performance acceptable? He inherited the keys to a Ferrari and turned it into a Pinto. He had the resources to sustain excellence, and made one bonehead move after another. His best trades (Halladay, Pence) are even debatable. And the (first) Cliff Lee trade, extending Ryan Howard, overpaying for Papelbon, sitting on his arse today…you get the point.

    He needed to be fired in 2012. I hate to ask fans to stop supporting the team, but until that happens will ownership wake up? What’s it going to take??

    • Hogey's Role

      July 31, 2014 at 9:28 pm

      Umm pence was the worst deal he made… Definately not one of the best trades he made…

      Other than that I agree he shouldn’t have a job and I would like to see someone else have control of the team that hopefully knows what they are doing…

      • Bellkirk

        August 1, 2014 at 10:41 am

        The Pence (acquisition) deal was awful in hindsight, but at the time I was ok with it as a win-now gamble. I’m just trying to be objective, not bashing RAJ for no reason. His body of “work” speaks for itself.

        Schenkman, I don’t fault RAJ for trying to win now with the core, but he messed that up wildly too. If there was such a win-now focus, why did RAJ give away Cliff Lee? Other GM’s consistently run circles around him. The Bosox just rebuilt their team in an afternoon, while our resident rocket scientist sat on his hands only to watch his most valuable asset (Lee) get hurt again.

      • schmenkman

        August 1, 2014 at 11:23 am

        They traded Lee because they were up against their budget at the time and couldn’t afford both him and Halladay.

        If you’re trying to say Amaro is not among the best and most creative GMs in the game, you won’t get any disagreement from me.

      • Bellkirk

        August 1, 2014 at 4:26 pm

        Schenkman, it’s not the trade of me, it’s getting no return. And there weren’t good prospects that didn’t pan it – the trade was a loser from day 1. RAJ said something along the lines of wanting to get it done quickly so fans didn’t get used to having both Lee and Halladay on the team…but as usual he got fleeced.

        Some teams are competitive because they’ve got great front offices, like Oakland and Tampa Bay. Some teams are competitive despite middling front offices. RAJ’s run atop the Phillies is reminiscent of the early 80’s when the Phils consistently got shafted. Ryno for Ivan DeJesus. Willie Hernandez. George Bell. That was bad. This is worse.

        I have yet to hear an intelligent argument why RAJ still has a job. The Phillies rapid decline is HIS fault.

    • wbramh

      July 31, 2014 at 9:30 pm

      Bellkirk: You’re wrong. This team is nowhere as explosive as a Pinto.

    • schmenkman

      July 31, 2014 at 9:46 pm

      The post 2008 WS Phillies weren’t a Ferrari, more like a 3-year old Buick.

      A very good team that got hot, got the bounces and perhaps had the right matchups in the postseason.

      Both the position players, and the pitchers, on the 2008 team were second oldest in the NL. By opening day 2009, every starter was over 30 except for Vic (28), Howard (29), and Werth, who turned 30 in May ’09. The farm system was ranked in the 11-15 range — good, and probably better than it is now, but not my much.

      In spite of the team’s age, Amaro and ownership probably realized that a core like that doesn’t come along often, and made the “win now” moves to wring one more WS win out of them. They were successful in getting the team to the postseason, but unfortunately the 2009, 2010, and 2011 teams, each one of which was better than the 2008 team, did not win the big one.

      • Terry

        August 1, 2014 at 7:02 pm

        Once again Schmenkman says it best

    • Oran Kelley

      August 1, 2014 at 7:30 pm

      “The Bosox just rebuilt their team in an afternoon.” Absurd. Because they got Cespedes? In spite of all the hype at the All-Star game, I really don’t think he’s all that good. And I doubt the Red Sox think he’s all that great either. I’m betting he’ll be gone again this off-season. And the guys they picked up from St. Louis may be useful pieces, but hardly the cornerstones of a rebuild. The Red Sox are a long, long way from being done. Yesterday was a mere start. Not a rebuild.

  7. jeff orbach

    August 1, 2014 at 8:32 am

    I am relieved in a sense, because I was afraid Ruben would have traded everybody away and gotten nothing in return.

  8. jobangone

    August 2, 2014 at 7:34 am

    Ken Bland

    I read your post……twice, and not real sure what you said. I guess after 58 yrs of watching baseball, maybe I just don’t get it.

  9. Ken Bland

    August 2, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Didn’t write enough to make a point. Try to do longer next time.

    Deadline day lack of execution wasn’t that big a deal. Making it seem like a day of doom struck me as a view I know better than to buy into. Kinda like these fools that wanna tell us how long the Phillies will be out of contention for. Not that I’d wager on anytime in the next 1 for sure, 2 pretty likely, or 3 is still underdog territory, but time’s pretty irrelevant to the comparison of getting someone in charge that has not only a different method of operation, but one that seems pretty time honored as a successful way of running an organization. ‘Til that happens, not much point in taking this thing anywhere near seriously. And that started well before Thursday.

    58 years, huh? 2014-58 = 1956.

    You’ve seen a lot, and should know this is just another of the many bumps in the road that we wish they would learn quicker lessons out of, even though that’s easier said than done. You and I got no control over it, so take it for what it is.

    Granted, Ruly Carp is no doubt heart broke by recent times, but don’t you think he’s kinda laughing at all this, or thanking his Higher Spirit for telling him to exit stage right a long time ago? I doubt 2008 (or even several years surrounding that on both sides) would change my assumption of his position. I’d think 58 years would lead you to pretty much agree with that guess.

    Still don’t know if I made an understandable point. No apologies. I have a very small, unnamed target audience when I write here almost all the time. That’s the way it is. Enjoy the weekend.

  10. Aya

    November 29, 2014 at 12:29 pm

    Grade A stuff. I’m unqlsetionabuy in your debt.

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