The Yankees’ history has always deemed that if a manager does not win more than one World Series, his tenure is nearly as failed as one whose teams flirt with the bottom of the AL East. Which is why as incredible as the 2017 season, the decision to not renew Joe Girardi’s contract was equally as incredible, but in a bad way. The relationship between the now-former manager and GM Brian Cashman was reportedly beyond repair, yet handing the roster over to Aaron Boone – a former player and recent ESPN analyst who has never coached or managed in baseball – may arguably be the defining move of Cashman’s executive career. It’s one rooted in the continued shift in the game where managers are less about gut instincts and feeling out the clubhouse, and much more about following the orders of executives who are guided almost completely by sabermetrics.
Could Boone work out as the skipper, having to learn how to manage the dynamics of player injuries and psyches on top of acting on Cashman’s commands? Who knows exactly. Yet Girardi had done wonders throughout his time in both Miami and New York under trying circumstances, with a World Series ring to boot. A team that was one game short of a 41st World Series appearance in 2017, Boone was given a title contender without the slightest experience. He’s going to have to figure it out quickly or Cashman’s gamble on changing managers will threaten the Yankees’ chances to get back to the Fall Classic in 2018.
By Jason Clinkscales
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