April 11, 2017
The hierarchy at the top of the Phillies front office began to change shape 2 1/2 years ago, when then team president and longtime club executive David Montgomery took a medical leave and was replaced by Pat Gillick.
Montgomery has since been shifted to the role of chairman of the Phillies. Gillick, a senior advisor to the president and general manager, stepped down from his temporary role as president two summers ago when Andy MacPhail was hired to take over as club president.
The ever-changing shape of the front office continued Tuesday when MacPhail announced that Michael Stiles will retire at the end of June from his full-time position as the executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Phillies.
The 71-year-old Stiles has been with the Phillies since 2001 and has held his current position since Feb. 2015, not long after Montgomery shifted from team president to chairman. When Stiles’ retirement becomes official on June 30, David Buck, the current senior vice president of marketing and advertising sales, will be elevated to the role of executive vice president.
“Mike has played a vital role in his 17 years at the Phillies, leading a talented management team during some of the most successful years in the club’s history,” MacPhail said in a press release. “His contributions will be missed by all who have had the privilege of working with him, but we certainly respect his decision to test retirement after an exceptional career both in the law and at the Phillies. I am very pleased that Mike has agreed to stay connected to our organization, in a consulting capacity, after he leaves his full-time role.”
While Buck steps into the executive VP role, John Nickolas, currently serving as a vice president and chief financial officer, will be promoted to senior vice president and CFO and Rick Strouse will be promoted from vice president and general counsel to senior vice president and general counsel.
All of the changes are effective July 1.
Here’s a quick rundown of the changes in the higher levels of the Phillies front office in the last three years:
• In August of 2014, team president David Montgomery takes a leave of absence three months after having surgery to remove cancer from his jaw; former general manager Pat Gillick assumes Montgomery’s job responsibilities.
• In January of 2015, Montgomery returns from medical leave but as chairman of the Phillies, shifting Bill Giles to the position of chairman emeritus. Gillick maintains the position of team president.
• In February of 2015, Michael Stiles is promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer, basically taking on the business end of Montgomery’s former job responsibilities while Gillick maintained control at the top of the baseball operations department.
• In June of 2015, the Phillies hire long-time baseball executive Andy MacPhail to succeed Gillick as team president at the conclusion of the 2015 season.
• In September of 2015, the Phillies announced that they will not retain the services of vice president and general manager Ruben Amaro Jr.
• In October of 2015, Matt Klentak is hired to replace Amaro as the Phillies vice president and general manager
• In November of 2016, John Middleton is announced by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred as the control person for the Phillies, meaning he will be accountable to Major League Baseball for the operation of the club and for its compliance with the rules of Baseball. In the press release, it notes that Middleton holds a 48 percent ownership stake in the franchise.
• In April of 2017, it’s announced that Stiles will retire in June from his role as executive VP and CFO.
Follow Ryan on Twitter: @ryanlawrence21
Like the new PhillyVoice Sports page on Facebook.