John Harper, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Brian Cashman may have fired Joe Girardi two years ago, but he still speaks glowingly of the job the former manager did with the Yankees, and doesn't hesitate to recommend that the Mets hire him.
"When you're talking about somebody like Joe, he'd give you instant credibility," Cashman told SNY on Wednesday. "He's buttoned-up, ready to go and proven successful in the largest market you can find. And he came out on top.
"He was here for 10 years, and some things have an expiration date, but that doesn't diminish the abilities the person possesses or the quality of work he provides. I highly recommend Joe to anybody, even our rivals, unfortunately."
Speaking via phone from his office, Cashman also offered praise for Buck Showalter, another potential Mets' candidate, and made it clear that Brodie Van Wagenen would be smart to hire either one, saying, "Buck and Joe are the highest-level candidates you can find. If you want to plug and play, those are the waters you've gotta fish in."
Of the two, Cashman is more closely linked to Girardi, having personally hired him after the Yankees parted ways with Joe Torre in 2007, and fired him after the 2017 season, winning the 2009 World Series along the way.
As has been his policy since letting Girardi go and hiring Aaron Boone, Cashman wouldn't go into detail about why he made the move that came shortly after the Yankees went to Game 7 of the 2017 ALCS against the Astros.
Yankee sources have said it was mostly about Girardi's intensity wearing on players over the years, and at Boone's hiring, Cashman spoke of the manager's ability to connect to people on all levels, players and otherwise.
But in any case, the Yankees' GM spoke only generally about why he made the move.
"Because it was time," he said. "It was tough. I just felt, after a decade, it was time to change some things up. Those are tough decisions to make. It's something I'm responsible for and it's not an easy decision but, again, it doesn't diminish what he did while he was here.
"There has been a lot of stuff out there, most of which isn't even accurate, which I'm actually happy for. Let people speculate inaccurately.
"Joe is top-shelf. He's passionate and prepared. He's all-in and he's collaborative. He's connected from ownership to the front office, to all aspects of the organization. He's going to represent your franchise extremely well because he cares. He's someone I'm proud I worked with, and proud I selected as our manager."
Cashman wouldn't say if he'd been contacted by the Mets or anyone else in regard to Girardi, but said he would tell them exactly what he was saying now.
"Whoever inquires, I'm going to give people the truth, and I'm telling you the truth," Cashman said. "I give Joe very high marks."
When asked about bullpen management being widely considered one of Girardi's strengths, Cashman agreed and said it was because, "He's prepared. He's lined up and prepared. The amount of detail and the process behind his pre-game prep is extraordinary."