A notorious over-manager, Girardi often gets himself wedged in between the game and his matchup book.
It only took a half an inning before Girardi needed to get involved against the Rays and asked his ace, CC Sabathia, to walk a light-hitting infielder with two outs to load the bases in order to face a power-hitting first baseman.
Carlos Pena did have worse numbers career-wise against Sabathia, but he can do far greater damage than Sean Rodriguez.
Besides, Sabathia is the ace of this staff and should be able to overrule the book of magical information when logic dictates otherwise.
Pena promptly blasted a grand slam off CC and that was that.
Then, in game two of the three-game set, Girardi started Derek Jeter at designated hitter and gave Eduardo Nunez the nod at shortstop.
Problem is, it's the second game of the season and it isn't exactly the dog days of August out there. I think Jeter is okay after one "strenuous" game against the Rays.
Nunez went on to boot the first batted ball of the game and that led to early runs off of Hiroki Kuroda. And yes, I can blame it on Nunez that much because Kuroda went on to retire the next two hitters after the error.
Was Joe Girardi guilty of over-managing against the Tampa Bay Rays?
That's a totally different outlook than the scenario that actually occurred. Jeter would've prevented such a blunder from happening. Doubt his range all you want, when a ball is hit at him, he makes the play.
Those two runs put the Rays over the top to win the game, 8-6.
Fast forward to Monday night when the Yanks bring their winless team to Baltimore to take on the Orioles' 3-0 ball club..
According to ESPN.com, Girardi says he will start A-Rod at DH once or twice during the three-game series.
While A-Rod has looked flawless on the field this season, it appears that resting early and often is more important than having the best defense possible.
You'd be hard-pressed to convince me that Jeter and Rodriguez are on board with such an early half day off. It'll be interesting, as always, to see what Nunez can get done at either position.
He's become quite the entertaining adventure in the field.
It's easy for me to second-guess every little thing and blow it out of proportion, but I don't think that these decisions were that difficult to make.
In Girardi's case and even managing in general, sometimes less is more.