Carlos Beltran will become the sixth candidate to interview for Yankees manager this offseason. Even Vegas can’t predict the over/under of interviewees anymore.
When it was ultimately decided that Joe Girardi would not be returning for his 11th season as manager of the Yankees, eyebrows were raised.
Not because ol’ Joe didn’t incur a mountain’s worth of criticism during his tenure in the Bronx — rather, because he led a young, upstart team one game shy of an improbable World Series berth.
So, when general manager Brian Cashman gave the word to majority owner Hal Steinbrenner, that the team needed a change in managerial philosophy, many fans understood — even agreed.
But fast forward a month, and word comes out today that the club will be expanding its interviewing process from the five men seen prior to Thanksgiving, to at least a sixth in the form of the recently retired Carlos Beltran.
Prior to the Owner’s Meetings, Steinbrenner said the team would interview “less than 10 candidates.” The goal would then be to whittle down the remaining contestants (yes, this feels like a game show), before setting up the final interrogation of two-to-three finalists, who would then travel to Tampa to meet with the entire Steinbrenner clan.
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When can we expect this final round-up to occur? Well, Cashman has already said that the organization is in no rush to hire a skipper, and it’s entirely possible no one is selected from now through the new year.
This is where the absurd part comes in. It has nothing to do with the quality of men that have thrown their names into the ring for managerial consideration.
I’m sure Rob Thomson, Eric Wedge, Aaron Boone, Hensley Meulens and Chris Woodward are each uniquely qualified in their own respect. But as we saw yesterday with the news that Thomson will interview for the vacant Phillies bench coach job, the longer this process takes, the number of able bodies will decrease.
When Cashman started this process, it was leaked on social media that there could be as many as 25 names on a “list” to pursue. While no one believed this, and Cash immediately shot it down — maybe there was some validity to it.
Clearly, Cash and Hal wanted Girardi out. Even if it meant not having a clear-cut successor or a realistic game plan on how to proceed.
Let’s hope the Yankees being the only team in baseball without a manager doesn’t hurt their chances of landing free agents, especially the golden goose, Shohei Ohtani. You know, players like stability.
So, no, they don’t “need” to rush into a decision, but how about we pick up the pace, a bit? Otherwise, those A-Rod rumors are going to gain traction.