The New York Yankees made a bold move with the firing of Joe Girardi this offseason. There are not many times you will see a team just one game away from the World Series fire their manager, but this is the route the Yankees have gone and for Aaron Boone, this could become a nightmare. Boone has history with the Yankees, much like Girardi did before becoming manager, however, who cares when championships are on the line?
Girardi managed the Yankees for 10 seasons with one World Series squeezed in. During his tenure, the Yankees would go 910-710 with six postseason berths and one World Series title in just his second season according to Sports Reference. However, this is about the obstacles that Boone will have to face much like Girardi did.
Girardi took over a team that featured Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, and Alex Rodriguez. Along the way, Girardi would go on to see his Hall of Fame players retire and forced to start over with a young roster. No, there were no more trips to the World Series in that time which made last season his best managerial job as he guided a team many picked to finish third in the AL East to just two games behind the Red Sox for the AL East crown.
Not only did they shatter the myth about mixing young and veteran talent, they were one game away from the 2017 World Series. And yet, Girardi was given his walking papers and the team was handed over to Boone. This is where Boone can do nothing but go up, right?
For anyone who thinks there’s no pressure on the first-year Yankees manager, think again. If Girardi was fired after being one game away, what are the expectations for Boone as he not only gets the same team but an upgrade with the National League MVP Giancarlo Stanton? Nevermind catching the Boston Red Sox for the division crown, none of that really matters. All the Yankees care about is winning No. 28. Boone has to be sweating bullets as he must do so in his first season.
Brian Cashman made the Stanton trade with one goal in mind. To find a hitter who could punish the pitchers the Houston Astros threw at them in the ALCS in 2017. If Stanton can continue what he started with the Miami Marlins last season and Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, and Aaron Hicks continue to excel, then Boone may very well achieve that goal. But what happens if the Yankees fail to win the World Series?
Has Cashman not done everything in his power besides sign Yu Darvish or Jake Arrieta to win a ring? Is the offense not one of, if not the best in baseball? What Boone has to remember is, one game away. That should be the Yankees’ motto this season. If the 2018 Yankees fall short of where Girardi led them, how is that not a failure? Every team enters the season with dreams of being the last team standing, but the reality of the situation is, only one team will do that. The 2017 Girardi-led Yankees came within one game of having a chance to be that team.
It won’t matter how many home runs Stanton and Judge hit. What matters is if Boone can finish what Girardi started in 2017. If he can’t, then what was all this for?