There is all this talk about Yankees skipper Joe Girardi walking away after the season and taking the job as the next Cubs manager.
But if the Bombers win a consecutive championship, they have to keep him, right?
I know that many Yankees fans have questioned Girardi's managerial skills. Heck, if you check with most fans they will point to one reason or another why they do not like their manager.
In St. Louis, as much as Tony LaRussa has won over the years, I know of many Cards fans that question what he does.
In Chicago, they ran Dusty Baker out of town, yet here he is with the Reds in the playoffs, and Lou Piniella is simply the next in line to fail at Wrigley.
So it makes sense that New Yorkers aren't all in agreement that Girardi is the best manager in baseball. But look, the Big Apple turned a veteran manager like Joe Torre into a Hall of Famer, so who is to say where the organization starts and the manager ends?
Which brings us back to the plight of Mr. Girardi. As a Cubs fan, I always thought he exhibited leadership skills and, of course, as a catcher, knew the game. He is a local product, so naturally he is mentioned as a potential candidate for the Cubs job—which is currently open.
But why would a supposedly smart guy like Girardi leave such a good thing unless he is asked to leave? Well, the answer is he won't, but we don't know if Brian Cashman and the Yankees brass want him to stay.
Sure, the easy thing is to say if the team wins another title, they will keep Girardi as manager. That much is a given. But what if they fail to recapture the title? Does that mean he is shown the door?
In New York, who knows? In Chicago, we still hail Mike Ditka for winning a Super Bowl 25 years ago. But in a place where "what have you done for me lately" is prevalent, no manager is safe.
This much we know: Girardi is a free agent after the season. And the Yankees have a policy of not discussing this sort of thing until after the season.
So how much of the Yankees' recent success is owed to Girardi? And how much of the success is owed to a $200 million payroll?
Before you dismiss the manager's influence in The Big Apple, consider that the Yanks have had the top payroll and have failed to win the World Series in other years.
In 2008, the Yankees actually had a higher payroll than in 2009, yet they failed to even make the playoffs!
In fact, from 2001 to 2007 the Yankees had payrolls at, or near, the top of baseball, yet they nonetheless failed to win a title in each of those seasons.
So if having the top payroll is the answer, how come those teams failed to win it all? Perhaps the manager does have some influence after all, eh?
Sure, in those years the Yankees had great teams that had much success, but they did not win the title. And isn't that the ultimate goal for New Yorkers? After all, you're not called the Second City.
And Joe Girardi has won a World Series. Could they have won with a different manager? No one knows for sure. But know this: If he wins it again, he is going nowhere.
New Yorkers know a good thing when they have one. The rest is history, as they say.