Joe Girardi could be in danger of being cast out of the Bronx, with the New York Yankees manager coming under fire for a series of blunders that has the team on the cusp of elimination from the MLB playoffs.
The Yankees have found themselves in a 2-0 hole to the Cleveland Indians after a listless performance in Game 1 and a blown five-run lead in Game 2, where Girardi’s managing mishaps took the wind out of the team’s sails. Girardi had a series of questionable decisions, including choosing not to challenge a controversial hit-by-pitch call that allowed the Indians to load the bases, hitting a grand slam in the next at-bat to cut the Yankees lead to one run.
The Indians ended up winning 9-8 in 13 innings, and afterward, closer Aroldis Chapman took aim at Girardi on social media. As the New York Post noted, Chapman liked an Instagram post that read, “Let’s hope Joe Girardi’s contract is not renewed after this season. He is a complete imbecile.”
On Saturday, Joe Girardi took responsibility for the poor managing decisions.
“I screwed up,” Girardi said, via the New York Daily News.
Within hours of the crushing loss, there were already rumors that the early elimination from the playoffs could lead to Joe Girardi being canned as Yankees manager. With his four-year contract up after this year, the team could simply let Girardi go with thanks for his years of service.
Whatever happens, his legacy could be tainted. New York Post columnist Joel Sherman said that the Game 2 blunder will forever hang over Girardi’s tenure with the Yankees.
“Girardi did not have a good Game 2 on Friday night, but his sixth inning stands as the lowest moment in his 10 years as Yankees skipper. A Stump Merrill inning. A Bucky Dent inning. An inning that served as the trigger for a 9-8 Indians win in 13 innings and what is now the Yankees’ likely extinction from the 2017 season, trailing 0-2 in this best-of-five.”
There had already been some rumblings that Joe Girardi could be fired after this season, to the point that even before the season, NJ.com was speculating as to who could be the New York Yankees manager in 2018. The report noted that the Yankees had missed the playoffs three times in the four seasons before 2017 and Girardi could be on the chopping block without a strong performance in 2017.
The outlet revisited the idea of Girardi being fired in July, noting that the Yankees had been underperforming and were falling out of the playoff race at the time. But the Yankees recovered to win the Wild Card.
There is still no indication from the New York Yankees that Joe Girardi could be fired, and the team still has a chance to start a comeback in Game 3 against the Cleveland Indians that would likely put the talk of Girardi’s exit to bed.
[Featured Image by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images]