And now, frustrated Yankees fans, you know.
Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner finally explained what it would take for manager Aaron Boone to lose his job — and it ain’t mishandling the bullpen, pinch-hitting Aaron Hicks in a big spot or losing yet another playoff series to the Houston Astros.
Steinbrenner, appearing on his first podcast — “The Show” with Jon Heyman and Joel Sherman of the New York Post — put it on the record:
“I think one of the most important things for me is he has the respect of the players,” Steinbrenner said. “They want to play for him and they want to win for him. And if I saw that disappear, then I make a change. And I’ve talked to Aaron about this, and people can say what they want to say about players not wanting to [play for him], that’s just not true. They do they want to play for him. They want to win for him. They respect them. I think he’s a good leader of the players. He’s a good communicator.
“I can take any manager and look at a hundred decisions he made during the game and I’m sure there’s a ton I won’t agree with. But he does a good job, just like [GM Brian Cashman] does.”
Steinbrenner said he likes the way Boone mixes analytics and “some common sense,” along with “listening to the bench coach, and, you know, being somewhat balanced.”
While fans nitpick every Boone decision that backfires, the Yankees, ravaged by injuries, are in fourth place in the AL East, 7.5 games behind the first-place Tampa Bay Rays. They are hoping that as players get healthy — center fielder Harrison Bader returned to the lineup recently and has had an immediate impact — they can make a run at the Rays.
But left-handed starter Carlos Rodon, who has yet to throw a pitch for the Yankees, is sidelined with back issues and is weeks away from joining the rotation. Outfielder/DH Giancarlo Stanton and third baseman Josh Donaldson (hamstring injuries) appear closer to minor-league rehab assignments, but no specific timetable has been set for either.
And after his ejection on Tuesday night for having too much sticky stuff on his pitching hand, Domingo German automatically will be suspended for 10 games.