Pulse: Character: Ruben Amaro Jr.
Half Latino, half Jewish, the new Phillies GM is only 44 but has already beaten the baseball odds twice. “My father advised me to be a soccer player or a doctor, and I didn’t do either,” Amaro laughs. Ruben Sr. had been a Phillie, so Jr. played baseball, too, eventually made the team, and smashed the ball all over his first week in town. Then, just like that, it stopped. He pressed, it got worse. Washed up at 33, Jr., a Stanford grad, suddenly got plucked by the team’s suits to join the front office, which spawned a comeback: Jr.’s grandfather, Santos Amaro, had been the Babe Ruth of the Mexican League long before dark-skinned Cubans could play in America, and now here’s Ruben, marginal mixed-heritage player, appointed to lead the world-champion Phils, running the show, lavishing other people’s millions on whomever he sees fit. What a game.