Tagged: Yankee

Joe Girardi Signs a 4-year Deal To Stay With The Yankees

Philadelphia Phillies at New York Yankees

“Binder Joe” is coming back to the Yankees

The Yankees announced that they have reached an agreement to bring back Joe Girardi as manager. The deal is said to be worth $16 million over the next four seasons, with incentive bonuses built into the contract.

There had been speculation that Girardi may pursue other opportunities, such as the vacancy with his hometown Chicago Cubs. The Yankees had Girardi under contract through October 31st and stated they intended to move quickly on retaining their manager. I was a bit surprised that Joe didn’t hold out to at least hear offers from the Cubs, and maybe the Nationals, to create a bit of contract leverage for his services.  Nonetheless, the Yankees clearly wanted Girardi to return and they wasted no time in resolving this issue.

Girardi’s short, but successful, stop with the Florida Marlins proved he could coach any baseball team, despite the payroll. The Marlins had the lowest payroll in all of baseball in 2006 and yet Girardi kept his squad in the wild card hunt on his way to earning 2006 National League Manager of the Year. Jeffrey Loria did not see eye-to-eye with Girardi and let him go following a successful first managerial season. He quickly became a hot name for all managerial openings but chose to go into broadcasting for YES before replacing Joe Torre a year later.

I constantly hear grumblings from Yankee fans that they  hoped Don Mattingly would be the next manager of this team, in the event that he is let go by the Dodgers. Most of that is caused by the love affair many fans have with Mattingly’s from his playing days, but sometimes it is best to keep emotions out of rash decisions. I can’t sit here and act like I have always thought of Girardi as a top-tier manager myself, but it is hard to argue against his very successful track record. The Yankees have the best record in all of baseball since his hiring in 2008, capped off by a World Series Championship in 2009.

The argument can be made that he tends to over manage ballgames, and has earned the nickname “Binder Joe” for constantly searching through his binder of stats to find the best match-ups. This is the new age of baseball, managers going with their “gut feeling” is a thing of the past, like it or not, and Girardi is keen on creating his preferred situational match-ups. He may go a bit over the top at times, but he does seem to be right more often than not.

In my opinion, this was a no brainer to bring Girardi back. He has proven he can handle the most pressure packed managerial position in all of baseball, which is something few can say. That being said, this is the Yankees, and only winning championships can assure Girardi is around to complete all 4 years of this contract.

*On a side note, this now means the Yankees have both Joe Girardi and AROD under contract through the 2017 season, in case you were wondering.

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A-Rod Returns

After months and months of speculation regarding Alex Rodriguez’s return, he finally stepped on a major league field last night. A-Rod made his season debut in spite of being suspended for over 200 games for his PED involvement. Rodriguez is appealing his suspension, which enables him to play until the arbitration process has been completed.

I am pleased that an official suspension has FINALLY been handed down, it’s about time. It was a given that this would only be the beginning however, as you just knew A-Rod would not go away silently. In a way, its great that he didn’t accept any sort of plea deal. Unlike Ryan Braun, whose case details will never be released to us, we should get to hear Rodriguez’s full story. The fact that baseball has forgone its 50 game suspension for a first time offender means they must have the goods on him going several years back.

I realize the Yankees are in desperate need for any bit of offense right now, which A-Rod is certainly capable of providing, but I hope Yankee fans will mostly prefer not to see him on the field at all. If you are a real baseball fan, I don’t know how you could possibly cheer him on, no matter what the circumstances. He represents everything that has been wrong with this game for quite some time and I hope this suspension helps end his career, sooner rather than later.

The fans booed him tonight in Chicago, but I could actually hear some scarce cheers mixed in. I hope he really hears it during each road trip he is able to make going forward. It will be interesting to see how the fans react when he returns to Yankee Stadium on Friday night. I hope he gets one of those famous “Bronx Cheers” as a nice warm welcoming.

What Is Going On In The Yankees Front Office?

Who is really running the show? Hal Steinbrenner or Brian Cashman

Who is really running the show, Hal Steinbrenner or Brian Cashman?

The Yankees front office seems to be taking a page from Alex Rodriguez these days, as they continue to make headlines for all the wrong reasons. Private conversations and personnel decisions have been becoming more and more public recently, which is leaving many to question if ownership and Brian Cashman are on the same page.

Before yesterday’s game, Joe Girardi told reporters Derek Jeter would be playing in a simulated game before deciding if he was ready to rejoin the team. But, he would not reveal the location. This has many asking the obvious question, Why not? What does protecting the location of a simulated game really accomplish? This comes off as odd to me and has me curious who made the decision to not inform the media where the game would be held. It’s not like an army of reporters would have quickly fled to Staten Island, where the game was actually held, to watch Jeter. Even if they did, what was the worst that was going to happen, he gets asked how he felt and if he is ready to rejoin the team? Pretty sure Jeter would have been able to handle these minuscule questions.

It became even clearer later in the day that there are conflicting views of what direction this team should be going. Brian Cashman let his true feelings be heard to Joel Sherman of the New York post over the Alfonso Soriano trade:

“I would say we are in a desperate time,” Cashman told the Post. “Ownership wants to go for it. I didn’t want to give up a young arm. But I understand the desperate need we have for offense. And Soriano will help us. The bottom line is this guy makes us better. … This is what Hal wants, and this is why we are doing it.”

Ownership overruling Cashman is nothing new, just think back to when the Alex Rodriguez extension was forced upon him. The move for Soriano cost them pitching prospect Corey Black. It’s not like Black was being regarded as a big piece of the future for this franchise. In my opinion, this was Cashman venting a little bit as his frustration is beginning o catch up with him.

It was well documented that ownership wanted to have the Yankees below the Luxury tax and restock from within, but this move says otherwise. If George was still around, no one would even think twice about this move. He would willingly take a chance on such a player without blinking. If it didn’t work out? So what, move on and go sign someone else. Those days were suppose to be behind us. Cashman was supposed to be the one making decisions now, but you have to be doubting that after this recent power struggle.

This season has been one giant headache for Cashman, and if ownership continues to run this team in such a manner, it might be best if these two part ways at the end of the season.

Will Alex Rodriguez PLEASE Go Away

The media can't get enough of A-Rod

The media can’t get enough of A-Rod

I think I speak for everyone when I say I have had enough of Alex Rodriguez for a lifetime. With all of these conflicting stories floating around, I don’t know what to believe anymore. This story has so much drama, lies and backstabbing that it belongs on the SOAP network.

Everyday we have a new story about A-Rod. Whether it be regarding his PED use, his rehab assignments or a PR disaster, the media just can’t get enough of him. It’s not even that I blame the media, ok maybe a little bit, but Rodriguez brings this upon himself more than anyone else.

Yesterday for instance, A-Rod sought his OWN second opinion on his quad sprain. Now that sounds fine and all, until you hear he did it without the Yankees consent. Dr. Michael Gross is the man who A-Rod sought out for a second opinion. By midday his name could be found everywhere.

After first appearing as a guest on The Mike Francesa Show to give his MRI prognosis, he went on to talk to just about any other media outlet that would talk to him. He would not say how this all came about, but did say he was “enjoying his 5 minutes of fame”. Sounds like he found the perfect doctor for this situation.

This has all become an absolute joke. why did A-Rod even have to seek out a second opinion on a grade 1 quad sprain? This isn’t exactly a severe injury that should require another doctors opinion. But moving on from that, why would A-Rod see another doctor without telling the Yankees? This leads me to believe he thinks the Yankees are doing everything possible to keep him off the field. But if that’s the case, why not file a grievance and go directly through the players union? That’s the whole point of being apart of a union.

Major League Baseball obviously has something on A-Rod. The only thing that scares me is that they must not have a “slam dunk” case against him. If they did, they would have suspended him the same time as Ryan Braun. Whatever MLB has, they must know it will be something that will either have to be dealt with in the court room or through the appeal process.

A-Rod is just bad for baseball at this point. Plain and simple. Each day he remains in the league he tarnishes not just his own reputation, but the game of baseball as well. Maybe the Yankees and MLB truly are working together to keep A-Rod out of the game. Quite honestly, can you really blame them if they are?

Twins Give Rivera His Best Farewell Gift Yet

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With each road trip this season teams have been presenting Mariano Rivera farewell presents, out of respect for the future Hall of Famer. I think these are nice gestures and all but I feel they aren’t completely necessary.

Unless the retiring great played for your team at one time, I don’t find it mandatory that you honor him with gifts during pre game ceremonies. I always felt a nice video tribute on the stadiums jumbotron is a more than suitable farewell, with the crowd giving him one last cheer before the game begins. With that being said, I loved the present that Twins gave Rivera last night.

Rivera was presented with a rocking chair made from shattered bats. This was a very original twist on an otherwise generic gift that is often given to retiring players. Rivera has made a career out of shattering bats with his famous cutter. The chair has two Twins logos on it with the phrase “Chair Of Broken Dreams” engraved across the back.

Hats off to whoever in the Twins organization came up with this gift. It’s nice to see some creativity put into these for once. I’m looking forward to seeing how the long time rival Red Sox honor Rivera when he Yankees make their final trip to Fenway.

This Weekend Marked The End Of “Yankee Stadium South”

Last night the Yankees dropped a third straight game to the Orioles making it the first time they have been swept by Baltimore since 2005.

For years the Yankees beat up on the basement dweller Orioles. While the O’s struggled to stay relevant, Yankees fan would pack out Camden yards which many began to refer to as “Yankee Stadium South”. I used to see this first hand while I was at college in the Baltimore area. It wasn’t uncommon to see more than half the stands wearing Yankees gear as it felt more like a home game during those years.

But now it appears those days are behind us. While the Yankees have quickly aged and have been struck hard by the injury bug this season, The Orioles years of rebuilding have finally begun to pay off. Their youthful and talented squad has overtaken the Yankees in the standings and seem to have a bright future ahead of them.

This weekend felt like the pendulum has shifted the other way now between these two. Granted the Yankees roster is a shell of what it was projected to be, but it was rather clear this weekend that these teams are going in two different directions. The O’s should only get better with their young core, while the Yankees are struggling to get their aging veterans back on the field.

There was a clear crowd of orange in the crowd this past weekend with the usual sight of Yankee caps missing from the crowd. It started last season as the Orioles made a late season surge to play their way into a ALDS game 5 with the Yankees. The Yankees were able to win that elimination game but this year they have been bypassed in the standings and made a statement this weekend.

The Yankees will be have a tough time rebuilding with the money they already have committed and the front offices effort to get below the luxury tax threshold. It appears the days of Yankees dominance are behind us, now it’s a question of whether they will be able to keep up with the likes of the Orioles in the near future.

Cashman Tells AROD To “Shut The F*ck Up”

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In the latest news from the walking tabloid that is Alex Rodriguez, he has finally caused Brian Cashman to let down his guard on how he really feels about the former MVP.

When AROD first joined twitter, I could not have been happier. Everyone knew it was only a matter of time until he embarrassed the Yankees and himself over the widely popular social media outlet.

On Monday Cashman was asked about rumored reports that AROD was ready to start a rehab assignment which he answered replied with “He has not been cleared by our doctors to play in rehab games yet,” said Cashman. “He’s getting closer. There’s no doubt about it. But we don’t have a date for him to start playing games yet. It could be July 1. It could also be July 5 or maybe June 25.”

Now he did throw that June 25 date in there, but he was clearly saying that in a sarcastic tone to reporters as if to say nothing has been decided.

AROD has been on twitter roughly a month now and has stuck to posting brief messages with photos on the progress of his rehab down in Tampa. Yesterday he posted this…

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Brian Cashman did not take a liking to this self proclaimed announcement that AROD is ready to start playing in games. His response when a reporter informed him of the tweet “You know what, when the Yankees want to announce something, we will” Cashman said. “Alex should just shut the f— up. That’s it. I’m calling him now”

This is what Joe Girardi had to say regarding the matter and Yankee protocol on rehabbing players:

“There is always a chain of command with injuries,” Yankees manager Joe Giardi said after the Yankees’ 5-3 win on Tuesday. “And there has to be. That is the process. It goes through our training staff, our doctors, our GM and then it probably gets to me.”

Now Rodriguez released a statement stating that he is going to comply with whatever the Yankees want him to do and that the tweet was simply a form of excitement. Whatever the real reason was, whether it was to force the Yankees hand in allowing him to begin a rehab assignment or not, the front office is clearly not pleased.

With an ongoing investigation looming on AROD’s full involvement with the Miami Biogensis clinic, I’m sure the Yankees would love to keep him off the field. The only problem? The Yankees are so decimated by injuries that they need his bat in the line up.

Stay tuned for this story to further develop and be sure to follow AROD on twitter as he surely will provide us with another story shortly.