Seemingly the entire baseball world was caught by surprise when former Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. took a job as the Red Sox’s first base coach after spending nearly two decades as a GM or assistant GM in Philadelphia.
Amaro and Red Sox manager John Farrell are former teammates and Corey Seidman of CSNPhilly.com reports it was Farrell who “reached out to Amaro to gauge his interest” in coaching.
As for what convinced Amaro to take the job, the ex-GM had some interesting quotes:
I guess it is unusual. But for me, I’ve always had kind of an itch to be back on the field. Clearly I had the great opportunity to work in the front office in Philadelphia for many, many years, but all the while, I guess, when you sit from that seat, there’s an observation–and as a player for many years–it’s always been something I’ve thought about quite a bit. And I was afforded a wonderful opportunity when John called about eight or ten days ago. One thing kind of led to another and here I am.
Amaro became an GM at a very young age and he’s still just 50 years old, giving him time to potentially make a run at becoming a manager if he enjoys coaching. In the meantime he’ll coach first base, help the Red Sox’s outfielders, and throw ambidextrous batting practice.
It’s a fascinating change in direction that is very uncommon, but if Amaro truly wanted to get out of a front office career track and get into a coaching or managing career track his options were joining Farrell’s staff or trying to find a job in the minors.