Yankees Cashman and Girardi May Be on the Bubble in 2017


The contracts of New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and manager Joe Girardi are both set to expire following the 2017 season.

Although his contract expires at the end of next season New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman told reporters during his annual end-of-season press conference Wednesday that he does not anticipate working out an extension with ownership this winter, but instead will wait and see how the 2017 campaign plays out.

"I assume things will play out the way they’ve played out for a long time here, where we will go through next year and collective ownership will decide what we want to do as we move forward. Unless ownership tells me otherwise, there’s that built-in assumption that we play our contracts out and then they’ll decide."

Yankees skipper Joe Girardi’s contract is also up following the 2017 season. He was also recently asked about his job security by the press, and he responded “Never worry about it. Don’t worry about it.”

Although the Yankees are technically a rebuilding club, it wouldn’t be surprising to see ownership make a change in leadership if New York doesn’t make the playoffs in 2017 or at least show significant progress towards contention.

If the youth movement falters next season, Cashman, the man primarily responsible for this new approach of building from within, seems like a likely scapegoat. It was reported around the trade deadline that ownership was resisting the idea of being sellers, so it isn’t clear how committed Cashman’s bosses are to his current plan.

Girardi is another obvious target if New York under-performs in 2017. They have now missed the playoffs in three of the last four seasons. Even if he’s not necessarily to blame, at some point it makes sense to start fresh if the current leader isn’t getting results.

For his part, Cashman offered nothing but praise for Girardi’s performance in 2016.

"He approached every game to the best of his ability to try to win. He did not give up. His job is not to give up. I appreciated his efforts in everything he did."

He also noted that he isn’t going to deviate from his current plan because of his own contract status. He reiterated that all of his decisions this winter will be in service of the long-term success of the franchise.

"I serve at the direction of ownership. I would think they’d not be pleased if I said, ‘Yes, there’s urgency now because my contract is expiring.’ I think if you’re doing your job right, there’s urgency to get a decision right in every decision you make. The only urgency I have is to make sure that every box is checked in the process and then live with those decisions."

Next: Yankees Could Look to Arizona for Pitching Help

Brian Cashman has been one of the most consistently successful executives in baseball since taking the helm of the Yankees following the 1996 season. The current Angels and Phillies teams show that it takes more than just money to achieve a perennial contender. Hopefully ownership has enough patience and foresight to see the benefits of Cashman’s approach and not make a rash decision in letting him go.