After weeks of interviews and deliberation, it appears the wait is finally over. According to multiple reports, the Yankees have selected Aaron Boone to be the team’s next manager. He will be the 35th skipper in franchise history.
Earlier today, Brian Cashman indicated that the search for Joe Girardi’s replacement wouldn’t require a second round of interviews. Word circulated that a candidate from the six-person field separated himself during the initial meetings. It is now clear that Boone blew the front office away. Hensley Meulens and Carlos Beltran were said to have interviewed well, but ultimately fell short in the managerial sweepstakes.
Boone, 44, played across 12 seasons during his career in the big leagues. No stranger to New York, he came over to the Yankees at the trade deadline in 2003. That transaction resulted in one of the most memorable home runs in franchise history.
After announcing his retirement from professional baseball in 2010, Boone joined ESPN as a baseball analyst. He spent the last two seasons working in the booth during Sunday Night Baseball. Unlike several of the other candidates, he has no coaching or management experience. The Yankees are relying instead on his baseball intelligence and communication skills.
“We’re looking for someone that has obviously the communication skills to manage people — vitally important,” Cashman explained earlier this morning. “Open-mindedness to information . . . Being able to package all the tools in the tool box, all that information [and] bandwidth and then laser-focus it in a way the players can understand it on a day-in, day-out basis.” Ultimately the Yankees believe Boone checks most, if not all, of those boxes.
With a manager in place, the Yankees can now move ahead with the rest of the offseason. That includes making a pitch to Shohei Ohtani and perhaps reconnecting with CC Sabathia. The first order of business is complete now. It’s time to look forward to other items on the agenda.