Blue Jays: Joe Girardi is a complicated, imperfect fit

Former Yankees manager Joe Girardi is a broadcaster now, but has said he’d like to manage again, if possible. Could he be a fit in Toronto?

Joe Girardi is, by practically every stretch of the imagination, a Yankee. An aggressively strategic baseball mind and a ruthlessly competitive former ballplayer, Girardi was a very successful manager in the New York Yankees organization.

Managing the team from 2008 to 2017, Girardi is fifth all-time among Yankee managers with 910 wins, fifth in games managed and fourth in playoff wins. With an extensive list that includes Casey Stengel and Joe Torre, Girardi’s resume as a manager is impressive, to say the least.

Still, one could find multiple reasons as to why Girardi would not be a good fit to manage the soon-to-be improved Toronto Blue Jays. When relieved of his duties in New York, many noted his inability to connect with youngsters and old-school managing style as prime factors for his dismissal.

Even with his reportedly disconnected relationship with the youngsters, one thing sets Girardi apart from the other potential managerial candidates mentioned by Blue Jays fans – he’s a winner.

When watching Yankees games over the past decade, one thing is eerily clear – Joe Girardi loves to, and knows how to win. Not that John Gibbons doesn’t, but there’s something about Girardi’s competitive, almost menacingly victorious nature that makes him an asset to any team.

Of course, it’s not a perfect fit. In fact, the very reason he was let go by the Yanks parallels with the reasons John Gibbons will be let go soon, but Girardi could be, and should be regarded as a viable option to become the next skipper of the Toronto Blue Jays.

A few things to consider here: first, it’s unknown whether or not Girardi would even consider coming to Toronto to manage. Given his history in New York and staunchly rigid baseball views, it’s hard to imagine him and the Shapiro/Atkins management tandem getting along swimmingly.

It’s also important to consider that the Blue Jays front office also likely has a manager lined up to take Gibby’s spot when he’s given the boot. Former Indians manager Eric Wedge has frequently been brought up in conversation, while New Hampshire Fisher Cats manager John Schneider has also garnered some votes to succeed John Gibbons at the end of the bench.

Despite all this though, it is intriguing to think of the possibility of having Joe Girardi man the Toronto Blue Jays bench. Though it’s probably not going to happen, the 53-year-old Illinois native should be thought of as one of the more exciting and beneficial candidates to be the next manager of the Blue Jays.

Next: Blue Jays: An interview with the legendary Cito Gaston

Even with the imperfect nature of this fit, it could make sense. Competitive, knowledgeable, experienced and formerly decorated – isn’t that what you’d want in a skipper? Of all the names being tossed around in the managerial debate, Joe Girardi remains one of the most interesting, intriguing and exciting of them all.

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