Sweeny: Will Joe Girardi Return As Yankees Manager?
By Sweeny Murti
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Joe Girardi doesn’t think his future as Yankees manager will hang in the balance all that long.
“I wouldn’t think it would go too long, I don’t,” Girardi said before Sunday’s season finale in Houston. “It’s not my personality to drag things out. I’ve always been a guy that likes to know what I’m gonna do the next day.”
Girardi said he has heard “rumblings” about the Steinbrenner family’s desire to bring him back after his second three-year deal expires (technically not until November 1, but realistically he is now without a contract).
After that the question becomes this: does Joe Girardi want to remain manager of the Yankees? Take a look at his answers during a long session with reporters Sunday morning, and decide for yourself.
On his time as Yankees manager:
“I’ve really enjoyed it. You learn a lot about yourself as a person. You learn a lot about what it’s like to sit in that chair. I’ve really enjoyed my time in New York whether it was a player, a coach, a broadcaster, a manager…for someone who wasn’t sure about New York the first time I came because you only came as a visiting player, it’s a wonderful place.
“I have a lot more experience and understand the expectations of everyone…the organization, the fan base, the media, expectations of myself. I’ve learned a lot. ”
On the role family will play in his decision:
“It comes down to family. They are first. Whatever is best for the group of us, not one individual, not me or just my wife or one of our children (The Girardis have three kids, ages 14, 11, and 7). Whatever is best for us as a group is what we’ll decide to do. And that’s something that I’ve put some thought into and I’m going to have to think about a lot over the next few days obviously. But that’s a decision we’ll sit down and make and decide what’s best.
“I have a wonderful wife who’s been supportive since day one, since we met in college and was my biggest fan then and still is my biggest fan. I have three kids whose lives are precious and extremely important to me and I gotta make sure that everyone’s taken care of.”
On life on the road:
“You’re away a lot and miss a lot of things. But there are a lot of good things that go into it too. They understand that and I understand that, but there’s things that you miss that you kinda wish you could be there at times.
“I know my daughter is excited for me to see her cheer, and I’m excited to see that. She’s talked about that, and that’s important. My youngest has talked about me coming to watch a soccer game. They all want me around. I’ll start helping coach my son’s football team as soon as Tuesday gets here, and I’m involved.
“It’s obviously hard, but they also, during this six-year time period, have liked what I do. So they understand that there’s a tradeoff.”
On feeling like he wanted to do this for a long time:
“I didn’t take the job to stay a year. I envisioned that I would be here. I’m a guy that’s a creature of habit and thinks that things are going to be there for a long, long time. You can go back to when I was a player. I thought I’d be in one place for a long time, and that changed a number of times, but that’s just how I think.”
On whether he considers his home New York or Chicago:
“Our home has been here (in New York). My kids are engrossed in schools here. We haven’t been to Chicago since…I haven’t lived there since 2006.
“My father’s gone, my mother’s gone…there’s not as much there as there used to be.”
On what makes New York unique:
“I think the competitiveness is here on a daily basis, a weekly basis, a yearly basis, there’s no doubt about it. And theres’ expectations no matter what, which I’ve always had too. So there’s definitely a match there.”
On TV broadcasting as an option:
“I’m not gone as much, that’s for sure. You see a lot more. As my kids get older they are more involved. It’s less being away from home. I watch as many games, just not from the dugout.
“I haven’t really envisioned myself doing something besides managing, but we’ll see.
“It depends what everyone wants. If I wasn’t to manage next year I don’t think that would be the last time I would manage.”
On remaining with a Yankee team in transition:
“There’s no challenge that really scares me, that I would ever shy away from, so that has very little impact on it whatsoever.”
On whether or not he has a voice in decision-making:
“I’ve always been able to voice my opinion. That’s never, ever been a problem. And there are going to be things, always, that people agree on, people disagree on. And I’m okay with that. I understand that my job is to manage the players I’m given, and that’s what I do.”
My take: It sounds like Girardi’s family really enjoys living in New York and that the state of the Yankees is not something that will scare him away from wanting to stay on the job.
And as long as there is not a major reversal from ownership, it sounds like Girardi will remain as Yankees manager.
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