Girardi shares thoughts on upcoming season

Sports Radio Interviews is a streaming independent sports blog which provides analysis on breaking sports news, upcoming games, and sporting events from a sports radio perspective. SRI articles frequently appear on SportingNews.com.

New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi has tough decisions ahead.
New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi has tough decisions ahead.

The New York Yankees are coming off their first championship season in a decade and with a reloaded roster that could be stronger than last year’s team. Curtis Granderson and Javier Vasquez are the biggest names to join the team, but they’ve also upgraded their depth with solid role players like Nick Johnson and Randy Winn.

But even with all that talent on hand, manager Joe Girardi still has some tough work ahead. He’ll have to balance egos, play the press, and choose a fifth starter, just to name a few issues on his plate.

Girardi joined WFAN in New York to talk about getting back to work, how he expects the center field position to sort itself out, and how his fifth starter situation will be resolved.

* * *

On what the big picture looks like as he approaches the season:
I think the big picture is you look at the health of your starting rotation, if you keep your starting rotation intact. I feel that we are going to have a good year, and we could have a very good year.

I think our rotation going into last year was really strong. We lost Chien-Ming Wang and didn’t really have him for most of the year. I think it’s strong this year as well, adding Javier Vasquez, who we know is not coming off of an injury and he is going to be a big part of our rotation.

How he expects the center field position to sort itself out:
We have a couple of different pieces. We have Granderson there, and leave him there every day, but we also have Gardner. Does he become an everyday player? Does he become a platoon player? What type of player does he become? He is another guy who can play center field. That is something that we have to iron out. I think about the things we have to iron out in spring training and that’s one of them…

We feel that our outfield has depth now, adding Randy Winn, so we feel good about the pieces. We just have to assemble them the best way.

On whether Jorge Posada is the leading candidate for the fifth spot in the lineup:
That is the guy that we are going to look at, definitely. The thing that you have to be careful is that you don’t stack your lefties. Posada being a switch hitter and Swisher being a switch hitter, that helps us in the second half of the lineup, and we need to be careful that we don’t make it easy for opposing managers just to bring in all of their left-handers against us.

On whether the fifth starter will be decided by a certain date or if it could be decided later in spring training:
I think you could carry it into March 25th. I would love to have it settled by then, so the other guy can get back to the role that they are going to do which would be in the bullpen or the later stages of the bullpen…

There is a scenario that maybe both [Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain] are in the bullpen, but I am not exactly sure. You expect one of those guys to probably emerge as a starter, but funnier things have happened.

Listen to Joe Girardi on WFAN in New York with Mike Francesca

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More from SRI
Frank Thomas talks about retiring
Dana White talks about the state of MMA and the media attention the sport deserves

Sports Radio Interviews is a streaming independent sports blog which provides analysis on breaking sports news, upcoming games, and sporting events from a sports radio perspective. SRI articles frequently appear on SportingNews.com.

New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi has tough decisions ahead.
New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi has tough decisions ahead.

The New York Yankees are coming off their first championship season in a decade and with a reloaded roster that could be stronger than last year’s team. Curtis Granderson and Javier Vasquez are the biggest names to join the team, but they’ve also upgraded their depth with solid role players like Nick Johnson and Randy Winn.

But even with all that talent on hand, manager Joe Girardi still has some tough work ahead. He’ll have to balance egos, play the press, and choose a fifth starter, just to name a few issues on his plate.

Girardi joined WFAN in New York to talk about getting back to work, how he expects the center field position to sort itself out, and how his fifth starter situation will be resolved.

* * *

On what the big picture looks like as he approaches the season:
I think the big picture is you look at the health of your starting rotation, if you keep your starting rotation intact. I feel that we are going to have a good year, and we could have a very good year.

I think our rotation going into last year was really strong. We lost Chien-Ming Wang and didn’t really have him for most of the year. I think it’s strong this year as well, adding Javier Vasquez, who we know is not coming off of an injury and he is going to be a big part of our rotation.

How he expects the center field position to sort itself out:
We have a couple of different pieces. We have Granderson there, and leave him there every day, but we also have Gardner. Does he become an everyday player? Does he become a platoon player? What type of player does he become? He is another guy who can play center field. That is something that we have to iron out. I think about the things we have to iron out in spring training and that’s one of them…

We feel that our outfield has depth now, adding Randy Winn, so we feel good about the pieces. We just have to assemble them the best way.

On whether Jorge Posada is the leading candidate for the fifth spot in the lineup:
That is the guy that we are going to look at, definitely. The thing that you have to be careful is that you don’t stack your lefties. Posada being a switch hitter and Swisher being a switch hitter, that helps us in the second half of the lineup, and we need to be careful that we don’t make it easy for opposing managers just to bring in all of their left-handers against us.

On whether the fifth starter will be decided by a certain date or if it could be decided later in spring training:
I think you could carry it into March 25th. I would love to have it settled by then, so the other guy can get back to the role that they are going to do which would be in the bullpen or the later stages of the bullpen…

There is a scenario that maybe both [Phil Hughes and Joba Chamberlain] are in the bullpen, but I am not exactly sure. You expect one of those guys to probably emerge as a starter, but funnier things have happened.

Listen to Joe Girardi on WFAN in New York with Mike Francesca

===

More from SRI
Frank Thomas talks about retiring
Dana White talks about the state of MMA and the media attention the sport deserves

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