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Pat Gillick: 'We're A Year Or Two Late In Starting Transition'

By Andrew Porter

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) --- Pat Gillick is certainly not afraid to speak the truth.

Gillick, who was recently named the permanent Phillies President , admitted last October that it would be at least a couple of years before the franchise----2008 World Series Champions---contended again.

On Thursday morning in Clearwater, Florida on the 94WIP Morning Show, Gillick stood by his comments and admitted the Phillies waited too long to start the rebuild.

"I don't know if I threw up the white flag, but I just try to be straightforward and honest with the public," Gillick told 94WIP Morning Show co-host Al Morganti. "I think credibility is big and your reputation is big, so consequently I think a lot of the fans, as I said the other, probably we're a year or two late in starting this transition. We probably should have used '14 as one of the years to transition, we'd be in year two in '15. So consequently, you know, it's a difficult situation to be in. But I'm not throwing in a white flag. We're going out, we're going to try to win every game.

Listen: Pat Gillick on the 94WIP Morning Show


"We're doing a transition period right now," Gillick admitted. I think when I was here we were adding pieces to try to get to the playoff. I think Ruben was still trying to add pieces in nine [2009], '10 [2010], '11 [2011], and '12 [2012] to keep us in the playoffs and we're in another phase right now. Whatever you want to call it---transition, rebuilding, re-tooling, reloading, whatever it  might be. That's kind of a new for me and that's kind of new for Ruben. I think that everybody wants to see how Ruben and I are gonna operate, not just Ruben, myself included."

Gillick admitted that during this transitional phase, the Phillies will display a lot of young, raw talent.

Al Morganti and Pat Gillick
Al Morganti and Pat Gillick Photo credit: CBS

"Realistically, looking at our team we have a lot of young people that we're going to integrate into the team hopefully, and it takes awhile for those people to get their feet on the ground," Gillick continued. "Not only physically, but mentally, more mentally than physically. So, it just takes some time for those kids to mature. That's why I think it's gonna be another couple years before we're back in competition for the National League East division title."

As for Gillick himself, at age 77, how long does he plan on taking on the daunting task of Phillies President?

"I've committed to as long as ownership wants me in this position," Gillick said. "It could be a year, it could be longer than that. Right now, it's whatever the ownership feels is the correct period of time. So, I'm willing to stay a year or willing to stay longer. However long it takes."

The man receiving the brunt of the criticism for the Phillies' collapse is general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. Gillick says while Amaro has certainly been the man in charge, the entire front-office deserves blame as well.

"I can't argue with you at all," Gillick said, when asked if Amaro deserves to be criticized. "When teams don't play well, when we finish to win 73-games last season, finished in last place. Certainly, everyone has got to be disappointed. The fans are disappointed, management is disappointed, the players are disappointed, so consequently we have that criticism. Sometimes, some people can get a little bit harsh.

"But at the same time, some of the criticism he's been taking has been a little bit of an overload.

"All of us have ideas, all of us provide information, and ultimately it's Ruben that makes the decisions," Gillick continued. "As I say, we're in it together and we make it as a team. Certainly he's the guy, he's the point guy, he's the guy out front that's gonna get a lot of the criticism as Rhea [Hughes] said, but we all share the blame of some things that might have gone on."

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