For those in the mood for a game of “connect the dots”, today’s news regarding the USA Baseball national team should put your pencils to the ready. Joe Girardi, previously the USA team’s manager, has officially stepped down in advance of the “Premier 12” Olympic qualifier, according to this tweet from Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe (Twitter link). Scott Brosius, longtime Yankee and a two-time Olympic gold medalist in his own right, will manage the American side moving forward.
While those obsessed with the sport of Olympic baseball will find this to be a cataclysmic development, the rest of us will feel inclined to view this announcement in light of its implications on the MLB managerial market. While Girardi himself has not issued a statement regarding his decision to step down from USA duties, it might be inferred that he could be prepping to accept a job as skipper of a big league club. Girardi, who has not managed in the bigs since his contract with the Yankees expired in 2017, has recently interviewed for the Cubs, Mets, and Phillies openings. Keep track of all managerial maneuverings with MLBTR’s Managerial Search Tracker.
More news from around the game on this eerily baseball-free Wednesday…
- From the “unwritten rules” department: according to SNY’s Andy Martino, the Yankees dugout was incensed during the course of Game 1, when several Astros players were heard whistling in advance of certain pitches on Saturday night. “I would consider whistling a tired act that goes beyond what is acceptable,” an unnamed major league executive told Martino. “If the Astros or anyone else was doing it, it would be considered a break in the unwritten rules. I have not been part of any team that used a whistle from the dugout for pitch type or location.” Of course, sign stealing is a time-honored part of baseball gamesmanship that has taken many different forms over the past few centuries; recently, MLB has even considered the implementation of on-field earpieces for pitchers and catchers, according to some 2018 reportage on the part of Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston.
- In our recent poll “Executives Under Pressure”, MLBTR readers voted on which club GM they thought would most be feeling the pressure in 2020 to put out a winning club–or else. Angels GM Billy Eppler placed third in the polling (behind Neal Huntington of the Pirates and Matt Klentak of the Phillies), with 11.81% of readers positing that LA’s fifth-year GM will likely be maneuvering to keep his job this offseason. In the view of The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, today’s hiring of Joe Maddon to the club’s manager seat might be further evidence toward Eppler’s occupational insecurity (link). “From every indication, owner Arte Moreno drove the hiring of Maddon, and by doing so, undercut his GM,” writes Rosenthal. Eppler will be tasked with several challenges heading into this winter, including the reinforcement of a pitching staff recently decimated by injuries and the loss of hurler Tyler Skaggs.
Joe–you’ve had blue pinstripes, now try the red ones!
Anywhere the egomaniac can get a job. He’s desperate for attention and willing to take any job. What a difference a few years of unemployment makes.
Too bad that Father Time has passed for Joe. He’s no longer relevant.
What a fool believes.
Id take you over Joe any day. I bet youd have them boys in line in a minute.
Evan, do you still work for NBC sports Boston?
Jerry Jones has held back the Cowboys for years and now Arte is pulling the same bs in LA. Sorry not sorry to the Angels fans out there.
Also add Middleton in Philly and the Wilpon’s to the same list.
I don’t blame anyone for the number of injuries’ the Angels have had.
In the last four years the only projected starter who didn’t go on the DL was Ricky Nolasco, and he was out of baseball the following year. Most have missed months, not weeks.
There are not very many teams who could recover from that, and Moreno has nothing to do with that.
MLBTR should poll who thinks replacing Brad Ausmus with Joe Maddon is holding back a team.
I have no issue with Maddon at all. Was he Eppler’s choice or Arte’s? Be honest with yourself when you answer.
I know for a fact Maddon was Arte’s choice.
And doesn’t that create dysfunction in the organization?
It can. If Artie is not listening to his GM and bringing in Hamilton or Wells (which I think was the case) then you have problems.
But an owner has every right to bring in the GM or Manager he wants and I think it’s up to the GM and Manager to get on the same page.
Why do you think DiPoto resigned?
If Eppler can’t work with Maddon, we have a problem. But I don’t know why that would be an issue. .
If Maddon is Moreno’s hire, why does that automatically mean Eppler was against it as this string suggests and as Rosenthal states (“…undercut his GM”)? Rosenthal is trying to create controversy where there isn’t any.
Charles – In general, how does a business owner making a hiring decision create “dysfunction” in an organization? And specifically in this situation?
Um, the cowboys have the most consistently good football brand. They haven gotten lucky with their last few quarterbacks, that’s the only reason they haven’t been taking home the Lombardi. The cowboy’s problem have nothing to do with bad ownership.
Are the yankees whistling in the dark? Has the dead ball died? Are their fans chucking things on the field?
You’re watching way too much ESPN
Any ESPN is way too much.
Yeah the issue with their fans chucking things onto the field is pretty serious actually. It also, fairly or not, represents Yanks fans in a very poor light.
Was that why Bregman got drilled in game 3?
No. Cessa just sucks.
Disguise your signs. Do a better job hiding what you are calling. Players admire their homeruns a lot, and that’s an unwritten rule broken by every team. If you can read another team’s signs from the opposing coaches, fair game. Coaches have to be better.
What do you mean by “disguise your signs”. If they are stealing signs given by the catcher, they are probably cheating.
Without mechanical assistance, very few people can see a catchers signs.
If the pitcher is tipping pitches, and a person in the dugout is picking that up, then by all means, whistle away.
“What do you mean ‘disguise your signs’.”
Mac, do I have to spell this out for you? You know what that means. If a runner is on second base and he sees a tendency from the catcher (because the catcher or pitcher isn’t smart), steal the sign. If that catcher makes it obvious for any runner to see what pitch is coming then that is on the defensive team for not disguising/hiding what’s coming. That’s not cheating; that’s defensive stupidity.
Sign stealing slows the game down, they should have the pitchers and catchers use smartwatches.
I’m all for electronic communication between pitchers and catchers.
Tank – batters stepping out of the box slows the game down. Arm guards on hitters slows the game down. Umpires awarding timeouts to hitters slows the game down. Changing baseballs after every pitch in the dirt slows the game down. Commercials slows the game down. Pitching changes slows the game down. Calm down with the sign stealing.
If a dugout is using television to steal signs and then whistling to tip off the hitter, that is breaking rules. There is something wrong with using electronics to steal signs.
If the base coaches can pick something up… Fine. If the base runners can pick somethin gup.. fine. But using electronics is quite a bit beyond an unwritten rule.
It is time for an earpiece between the pitcher and the catcher.
It’s not being done via television this year. MLB implemented an enforced 8 second delay for all in-ballpark broadcasts this season.
So the Astros are doing something else. Maybe fair, maybe not, we don’t know exactly what they are doing.
Using a television in the dugout would not help because the game is on a delay
I think we have to know how they are doing it before we can have an opinion if it’s cheating or not.
I wonder who on the Yankees needs their diaper changed. Could’ve swore these guys are over the age of three.
Wise words spoken by somebody who obviously knows all about wearing diapers regularly.
It does seem coincidental that the Yankees are complaining about sign stealing again when they are down 2-1 in the series and that doesn’t sound good to their fans either…let alone all you anti-yankee guys out there.
If the Astros are truly stealing signs in a gamesmanship manner than that’s just part fo the game and whats good for them should be good for the Yankees also.
If they are using spotters in the outfield to relay signs either from the bullpen or otherwise then that isn’t fine and the league should be all over that.
Its very possible that sign stealing is something the Astros are using to get into the Yankee’s heads, and the whistling is nothing more than a feint to make the defense suspect the Astros hitters have a great advantage.
The Astros steal signs and the Astros know when pitchers are tipping their pitches. This is not news. So don’t make your signs easy to pick up, and don’t tip your pitches. Simple! The fact that this bothers people is amazing.
Tipping pitchers and stealing signs are two different things. Having more complex signs has nothing to do with tipping pitchers.
The catchers signs can only be seen by a very small number of people, save for a guy who is on second base, none of those people should be associated with the opposing team.
If they are using equipment to pick up the catchers signs…. I think everyone should have a problem.
They aren’t using technology. Haha.
At least Gardner stopped banging his head on the dugout roof.
I can hear all the Yankee excuses already… Astros stealing signs. Astros were whistling, The ball is deflated. What a bunch of crybabies.
Mostly I’m wondering how well your favorite team is doing right now.
“Mostly I’m wondering how well your favorite team is doing right now.”
Wow, get a life.
LOL!!! Get a favorite team that doesn’t suck so much and you won’t look like such a fool.
At least my team has won a championship in the past 10 years. What’s it like to be a fan of a post season choke team?
Are you Brett Gardner? You banged your head on the clubhouse roof a few too many times.
Yeah n CC is the leader of the cry babies in their dugout. Lady yr Judge was playing his boom box loud singing Ny NY. Just a way to unnerve Boston, which it didn’t last yr. the Evil Empire doesn’t need to cry or try to intimidate, they are good n should win with just their fire power.
Maybe you should try banging you head on against something hard also in the oft chance your make any sense in your posts.
Have the Yankees ever lost where the other team didn’t cheat? If so it wasn’t reported.
That’s cuz they’re GOAT.
Yankees already beginning to make excuses in case they lose. Didn’t this team once have a player that slapped the ball out of another player’s glove in an ALCS? Because a play like that is totally kosher in baseball.
I just hope Eppler drafts some players worth watching when they reach High-A.
There are only a handful of players in the world worth watching at High-A.
I remember watching the 84 Olympics at Dodger Stadium. There were a lot of great players on that team, but even they were not developed enough for me to want to watch them play.
I think you ask too much.
Yeah some really good young players on that team – McGwire, Larkin, Will Clark….
And they looked “rough”. They had all the talent in the world, but I didn’t enjoy their play.
I live in a AAA town and I think the games are not watchable. I have no idea how anyone expects much from high A+.
Do you like baseball?
“Scott Brosius, longtime Yankee…”
Played in Oakland 7 years
Played in New York 4 years
MLBTR doesn’t consider the A’s a major league team. Yankees are the only team they care about.
I love watching Brett Gardner strike out. The veins in his head start throbbing… It’s funny.
That’s cuz a player is supposedly invisible unless they play in NYC.
If the Astros were stealing signs or cheating in any way in Game 1, they did a terrible job of it. Did they even get a runner past 2nd base?
Don’t try to use logic on these goofs… The mlbtr writers still think the Harper Machado signings were low.
If you have such contempt for MLBTR, which you obviously do, why waste your time s****ing up the comments? Why even waste your time perusing such “tripe” which is obviously beneath you?
I’ve heard today from media that the rainout helps astros hitters (not sure why), Astros pitching staff and now that they are whistling. It’s a 2-1 series, but media is already making excuses for the inferior team to lose.
Also I think Girardi was a terrible manager, if he wasn’t, the yanks would have resigned him, but nothing was worse than him in the booth. Whatever gets him out of the booth would be great.
The past few centuries?