CBSSports.com reported Wednesday afternoon that MacPhail will be hired "to lead their operations soon." Phillies president Pat Gillick declined comment twice this week about MacPhail, including Wednesday, but multiple sources told MLB.com that MacPhail will be joining the Phillies shortly. The club has not confirmed the move.
Gillick, 77, replaced David Montgomery as team president in August 2014, but he had not been expected to remain in the role for long.
MacPhail's name emerged more than a week ago in a CSNPhilly.com report. MacPhail, 62, has a long history as a baseball executive. He served as Minnesota's general manager when the Twins won the 1987 and '91 World Series. He helped the Cubs to two postseason appearances from 1994-2006. He then served five seasons as Baltimore's president of baseball operations, making some of the trades that helped the Orioles return to the postseason.
The timing of MacPhail's arrival is critical with the Phillies rebuilding and reportedly trying to trade veterans Cole Hamels, Jonathan Papelbon, Aaron Harang and others before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline.
The Phillies also need to determine the fate of Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., whose contract expires at the end of the season, and the rest of the front office. They also must decide if they want Ryne Sandberg moving forward as their manager. Sandberg's contract expires after the 2016 season.
MacPhail likely will replace Gillick as president and use the foreseeable future to evaluate the baseball-operations staff. It remains to be seen if MacPhail will bring anybody with him, either immediately or down the road. One source mentioned Angels assistant general manager Matt Klentak, 34, as a possibility to join the organization in the future. MacPhail hired Klentak as Orioles director of baseball operations in 2008, making him one of the youngest executives in baseball.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.