The New York Yankees announced today that they wouldn't be bringing back manager Joe Girardi next season, ending a 10-year managing career with the club that saw him win a World Series in his second year with the team and lead the Yankees to 6 additional playoff appearances.
Breaking: Joe Girardi is out after 10 seasons as Yankees manager, sources told ESPN 1000's David Kaplan. pic.twitter.com/gBYk6Kj0mP
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 26, 2017
The Yankees announced the move today, after a playoff season filled with speculation as to whether Girardi would be brought back on a new contract. When the Yankees found themselves in an 0-2 hole against the Cleveland Indians in the American League Division Series, in part because of a controversial decision Girardi made to not challenge a call that then led to a game-changing grand slam, it seemed Girardi's days in the Bronx were all but numbered.
However, after leading the team back to beat Cleveland, and then pushing the Houston Astros to a seven-game series in the American League Championship Series, some observers are wondering what the point is of parting ways with Girardi. Whatever the reasons were, a statement from Girardi didn't make it sound like he had any interest in leaving:
“With a heavy heart, I come to you because the Yankees have decided not to bring me back.”—statement from Joe Girardi #Yankees
— Sweeny Murti (@YankeesWFAN) October 26, 2017
"As Hal Steinbrenner and I mentioned to Joe directly this week, he has been a tremendous Yankee on the field and away from it, as a player, coach and manager," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said in a statement given to ESPN. "He has a tireless work ethic, and put his heart into every game he managed over the last decade. He should take great pride in our accomplishments during his tenure."
ESPN's Andrew Marchand suggested it was simply Girardi's time to go, after he couldn't connect to a burgeoning young core the way that previous Yankee Joe (Joe Torre) was able to connect with Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, and Jorge Posada, when they made up the team's previous young core. Similarly, while praising Giradi's workmanlike abilities, the Post's Mike Vaccaro wrote that Girardi "did nothing to ease the often joyless burden that managing the Yankees can be, the win-or-be-damned corporate credo that values champions above all else."
Girardi didn't have a single losing season as Yankee manager, even while dealing with various Alex Rodriguez-based circuses and a roster that got older and more expensive each year. Ultimately though, not even taking a young team in what was supposed to be a rebuilding year within one game of a World Series was enough to save his job.
As for who's next on the hot seat in the Bronx, the Post has a list of candidates including Mets hitting coach/former Yankees hitting coach Kevin Long, former Yankee Raul Ibanez and current bench coach Rob Thompson. But this list of potential hires is way funnier:
Funniest possible Yankees manager hire:
— Michael T 👻Spooky💀 (@mtsw) October 26, 2017