The Texas Rangers made several waves on Friday by interviewing Joe Girardi, former manager of the New York Yankees, to replace recently fired manager Jeff Banister. And if I were a Rangers fan, I would be all in on this move.
Joe Girardi was inexplicably fired from the Yankees after losing in the ALCS to the Houston Astros, who later went on to win their first franchise World Series in 2017. The Yankees replaced Girardi, a proven coach, with well known celery stalk, Aaron Boone, a move that is much to the ire of a lot of Yankees fans.
Girardi had a 910-710 record with the Yankees, including a World Series win over the Philadelphia Phillies in 2009. This is a manager who knew how to deal with the scrutinizing media in New York, communicate with All Star caliber players like Derek Jeter and A-Rod, as well as a great strategist in any big spot situation.
Don’t get me wrong, as a Red Sox fan I was thrilled when the Yankees decided to replace him with Aaron Boone. But thats not what this blog is about.
The Rangers fired Jeff Banister before he finished his 4th season, compiling a total record of 638-325. That is a .509 winning percentage. Don Wakamatsu, the Rangers bench coach, took over the reins for the remaining 10 games of the season, and he has also interviewed for the job.
Its absolutely astounding to me that the Rangers fired Banister. I truly believe that he will be managing elsewhere very soon and the Rangers may come to regret this decision.
However, they have an opportunity to right this ship and hire a true baseball mind. They have the chance to hire someone with experience in building a team culture, as well as a mindset required to be successful, not only through the regular season, but the post season as well.
The Rangers are taking their time here, interviewing other candidates such as Don Wakamatsu (current interim manager), Sandy Alomar Jr (Cleveland coach), Brandon Hyde (Cubs bench coach) and Joe Espada (Houston bench coach).
But none of these candidates can even hold a candle to the home run that the Rangers would hit by hiring Joe Girardi. Jon Daniels, the Rangers general manager, has an opportunity here. Lets hope that he can make a sensical decision, because he hasn’t proven to be a very good GM up to this point, and if I were a Rangers fan, I would have him under the proverbial microscope.