As time continues to tick by, the present, unchanging, never-ending tenure of Ruben Amaro Jr. as general manager of the Philadelphia Phillies will plague the organization well into the latter half of this decade.
Overpriced contracts, comical vesting options and other various head scratching decisions from Amaro have negated the feel that many Phillies fans had in 2006 when they knew their team was on the verge of something great. A feeling that shouldn't have subsided so quick, since the Phillies have been awash in Benjamin Franklin's, but a feeling that has turned numb due to complacent idiocy with no regard towards tomorrow.
Today, Phillies fans know their team is on the verge of something awful.
Phillies nation is inundated with fans that know their baseball. They know about conventional numbers and advanced metrics. These folk understand what it takes to build a winner from the ground up because for so long, they have been looking up from under the soles of the Atlanta Braves.
There is one thing fans in baseball hate—knowing that their franchise has no shot to win over the course of a multi-year time span. Understanding the payroll, farm system and front office are in shambles is what brings fans to the stadium with paper bags over their heads.
Another thing fans of baseball hate is when they are being lied to. That is exactly what Amaro continues to do to the Phillies fan base.
His comments, whether in print or on air, about having a team that can compete for an N.L. pennant in 2014 are blatant lies. They are laughable. Everybody knows that the Phillies are designed to be abysmal in 2014.
First off, the production on the field will not match the price tag that accompanies the roster.
Secondly, the anemic offense will continue to allow fans to flock to the gates by the turn of the seventh inning. As FanGraphs notes, the Phillies offense combined for a 6.2 Wins Above Replacement in 2013. Only the Seattle Mariners, Chicago White Sox, Houston Astros and Miami Marlins were worse.
So how did Philadelphia get to the point of having a bottom-feeding defense and offense?
It begins with the apathetic regard towards Amaro. The general manager needs to take blame for preserving a cast of has-been's. However, the fans must take blame too. The boisterous minority who continue to drum beat for the Phillies, who place blind faith in Amaro's decision making, need to take blame for the maintenance of the status quo.
These same fans who rail against anyone who dares to speak the truth about the sad state of affairs at Citizen's Bank Park need a gut check. Unfortunately, their opaque blinders disallow them to see the crisis in South Philly. These homers are virtually running towards the front line with zero ammo and no regard for the land mines under their feet.
At least they are outfitted with the newest Phillies hat and Marlon Byrd jersey.
The majority of us have already prepared. We have our bunkers outfitted with stashes of bottled water, MREs and Shane Victorino bobbleheads. We knew what the signal was from the get-go. We understand that we will be hunkered down below the terrain for the next several years while the zombies continue to feast on whoever buys the hype of the Amaro gravy train.
We will not trade in our love for the Phillies. Rather, we will be armed for the takeover once the walls of Amaro come tumbling down. We will patiently wait for the arrival of J.P. Crawford, for the healing of Roman Quinn and cross our fingers to score the next Kris Bryant or Mark Appel in a couple years.
Until then, we will be sitting with our arms crossed, staring belligerently into the eyes of the Phillie Phanatic as we wait for baseball's greatest mascot to pelt Amaro with his Hatfield Hot Dog gun until Amaro has realized he is no longer welcome in Philadelphia.