1. Bob Melvin
It’s funny how every offseason another team does something you’d never expect, something you didn’t even think was possible. That team is never the New York Yankees — the Giancarlo Stanton trade notwithstanding, which hasn’t entirely worked out until this point anyway.
The Yankees have the power to make wildly unrealistic scenarios become a reality … but they’ve refused to have that be their style for over a decade now. Instead, it’s all by-the-book nonsense that serves to uphold a disingenuous image (or by-the-wrong-book nonsense like hiring a first-time puppet like Boone out of nowhere).
So when fans pondered last offseason about the Yankees poaching Bob Melvin from the Oakland A’s, many people scoffed at the idea. “You just think that because you’re the Yankees you can have whatever you want, huh? Spoiled fans thinking they can take what’s not theirs!”
Sure … but the San Diego Padres can do it? A team that, up until that point, had made the playoffs once in 15 years? A team that just had an epic late-season collapse that went from playoff aspirations to a sub-.500 record?
Yeah, but we’re the a–holes. Got it.
The fact that the Padres and general manager AJ Preller pulled this off just goes to show how badly the Yankees lack any sort of creativity. Laugh all you want about Melvin’s mismanagement of the Padres’ situation in Game 5 of the NLCS … but he got to Game 5! And it took him that long to make a mistake! Meanwhile, Boone cursed the Yankees’ playoff run beginning in Game 2 of the ALDS.
Melvin beat the Mets on the road and the Dodgers in the NLDS. The Yankees beat the Guardians in a series they made that much more difficult and then got swept by the Astros. These managers are not the same and never will be.
But the Yankees don’t see that. Or, maybe they do, and there’s some desire from the front office to avoid giving someone full autonomy to call the shots in the dugout. Whatever it is, while Boone is a problem, the Yankees’ way of doing business is the larger concern.