Yesterday, The Associated Press moved at least three different pictures of this dugout telephone. There was a vertical picture, a horizontal picture of just the phone, and this one showing the words World Series painted on the wall. I liked the words, so I chose this one.
Why such focus on a phone? Because haven’t you heard, this World Series is suddenly all about calls to the bullpen and superstars calling plays and managers making decisions that might actually influence the game. When the World Series started, I wrote a post saying the Yankees were built for his series — it was really just a reference to the bullpen — and now it turns out the Yankees were built for this World Series for an entirely different reason.
I think I’m in the internet minority, but I actually like Girardi as a manager. I’ve certainly disagreed with some of his decisions — pinch hitting Eric Chavez for Brett Gardner certainly stands out as a recent example — but he always seems to have some level of logic behind his choices.* I might not agree with his logic, but at least you know he’s thought about these things. As a member of the media, that’s pretty much all I can ask for: Right or wrong, at least be able to explain yourself.
As Tom Verducci pointed out yesterday, Tony La Russa tried to explain his Game 5 decisions, but his explanations made little or no sense.
There are two very different managerial styles in this World Series. For those of you who don’t like Girardi, which would you rather have, an occasional over-thinker in La Russa or a “could get lucky” guy in Ron Washington? Or is by-the-book Girardi better than either World Series alternative?
* Just a side note, but isn’t this what made the Yankees six-man rotation experience so bizarre? Agree or not, Girardi usually sets his mind to something and makes his choice. Choosing not to settle on five starters was uncharacteristic unless Girardi really thought the extra rest was providing a big boost.
Associated Press photos