Yankees skipper Joe Girardi’s stubborn act with the media is growing stale.
About the only consistency in this inconsistent Yankee season is Joe Girardi’s prickly and evasive demeanor during his postgame press conferences, which air on the Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network.
With his terse rebuttals, delivered with a why-the-hell-are-you-asking-me-that look in his eyes, the manager is a candidate to blow his cool and verbally launch on boss scribes sooner rather than later.
Girardi provided further evidence last Sunday after Oakland’s Jesse Chavez pitched eight scoreless innings, leading the A’s to a 3-0 shutout of the Bombers.
In the postgame session, YES’ Meredith Marakovits tossed a John Filippelli-esque (he YES’ executive producer) designer softball at Girardi. He reacted as if it was chin music.
Marakovits: “Is this just a situation where he (Chavez) pitched a great game.”
Girardi (snippy): “I don’t know. I can’t see the at-bats on TV so it’s hard for me to say.”
Please. Would it have killed Joey Loosleafs to credit Chavez with a well-pitched game rather than trying to avoid the reporter’s benign question?
Then again, Girardi is the same guy who sees a completely different game than other educated eyeballs after CC Sabathia pitches. If you listen to Girardi’s responses to boss scribes on those occasions it sure sounds like Sabathia is a candidate for the Cy Young despite his 5.45 ERA and a .312 batting average against.
The perception that Girardi is delusional when it comes to Sabathia can be explained away as the manager standing by the big man. There’s no dodging involved, just phantasmagoria.
The same cannot be said when a jaw-jutting Girardi goes into stonewall mode. Like back in April, when he lashed out at scribes following a report he had a sit-down with Masahiro Tanaka to discuss the pitcher’s velocity. Tanaka confirmed the discussion took place, but Girardi would not.
“I wouldn’t tell you anyway,” Girardi said. “Our meetings with players are for us, not for the media.”
From our observations, when it comes to the media, Girardi is stubborn and set in his ways. But pardon me, haven’t the Yankees missed the playoffs the last two years? And if it happens again, fingers will be pointed. Some by the media — even in Girardi’s direction.
After Girardi won Manager of the Year with the Marlins, team owner Jeffrey Loria fired him. It was a spite firing due to Girardi publicly scolding the owner. Ordinarily you would expect the media to have vigorously defended Girardi while lambasting the owner for being petty. But the media, with whom Girardi had also treated with disdain, did not rally around Girardi or come to his defense.
So, how would the media covering the Yankees react if Girardi found himself on thin ice in the Bronx?
Would they extend a helping hand?
Or would the recipients of Girardi’s “unique” media stylings develop a sudden case of alligator arms?
He means a lot of things to the unwashed masses, but even his most loyal bootlickers would suggest Mike (Sports Pope) Francesa could become Mr. Bailout, a man capable of reducing the financial losses CBS Radio (it owns WFAN) is expected to incur on its WFAN Yankees radio deal.
Industry sources expect to CBS to lose $ 4 million to $ 5 million the deal this season. WFAN is in the second year of its 10-year contract with the Yankees, which averages about $ 17 million per.
So, if CBS suits would agree to release Francesa from his contract (it expires in 2017) allowing him to retire (he says he wants to) they would save six months of his 2015 salary. And they would not have to pay him in 2016 or 2017, which would amount to a savings of somewhere between $ 6 million to $ 8 million.
Saving Pope Bucks would more than cover what CBS is expected to lose on the Yankees deal this season. And because FAN’s next afternoon drive mouth won’t be making anywhere close to Francesa-like money, there would be even a bigger savings for CBS down the road if it sets the Pope free.
By the way, this whole retirement thing must be weighing on Francesa’s mind. Why else would he keep referring to Adam Silver as “the NBA general manager” during a lengthy Tuesday interview with the commish.
KISS OR SCHEIN
On SNY’s Loudmouths, Adam (Nabob) Schein basically called Willie Colon a phony, which means the Jets offensive lineman’s TV career is off to a flying start.
Schein said Colon’s unflattering critique of Geno Smith, made during a SiriusXM radio broadcast from the NFL’s Broadcast Bootcamp (a workshop for current players who want to get into broadcasting), was specifically “calculated” to impress any network executives attending the bootcamp.
So, according to Schein, Colon didn’t really mean what he said. No, Colon was popping off, being provocative, for the express purpose of drawing attention to himself. What a novel concept. Yet judging by Schein’s condemnation, HE would never look to ingratiate himself. Or ever engage in such overt self-promotion.
So, we guess when Schein showers Norman Julius Esiason with “great point Boomer” on CBSSN’s “NFL QB,” or tells Phil Simms “great point Phil” on “TOPS,” he is just expressing love of their football acumen.
And not engaging in “calculated” tuchis kissing sessions.
HUMOR IN THE CAN
PTI’s Michael Wilbon knows crass.
Or does he?
After Tony Kornheiser riffed on a Texas Rangers player unloading a bucket of Powerade on reporter Emily Jones, who was interviewing Josh Hamilton, Wilbon explained this stuff happens in baseball because “it’s the crassest team sport.”
“Doing anything that’s naughty, dredging up bathroom humor. These are the provinces of baseball,” Wilbon said.
Oh really? Perhaps Wilbon should spend a day listening to ESPN Radio — or any ESPN local radio affiliate. Then he will quickly learn baseball does not have an exclusive on crass or “dredging up bathroom humor.”
NO SOLIDARITY IN CHARITY
When it comes to charity, you would think people who don’t see eye-to-eye could briefly join together for a good cause.
That’s why it was surprising Thursday when Francesa could not bring himself to congratulate Esiason/Cartoon for their charitable effort on behalf of our city’s police.
The “best” Francesa could say to a caller who asked if he was invited to the Yankee Stadium event was: “I’m not talking about the softball game. It’s over with.”
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DUDES OF THE WEEK: NORMAN JULIUS ESIASON & CRAIG CARTOON
For organizing and hosting a “True Blue” celebrity softball game to benefit the families of police officers killed in the line of duty. The WFAN morning mouths, the celebs who participated and all those who worked behind the scenes Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium were one heart beating. They combined to produce a memorable event not only raising money, but awareness for every cop who puts his or her life on the line. Net proceeds from the game went to the families of slain police officers Brian Moore, Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos, the Silver Shield Foundation and the PBA Widows’ and Children’s Fund.
DWEEB OF THE WEEK: CHICAGO BEARS
Let us be the latest, and probably not the last, to toss a shovel of dirt on this iconic NFL franchise for management’s inexcusable behavior regarding the signing of troubled defensive end Ray McDonald. The club’s explanation for its half-assed investigation into McDonald’s past issues with domestic violence only serves to underscore how far the NFL has to go. Yes, Roger Goodell & Co. have miles to travel before gaining the public’s full confidence that they have grasped control of this serious issue.
What Willie Colon said: “. . .We bought the Porsche. We’ve given him (Geno Smith) the keys. He can’t crash it. Bottom line, he can’t crash it.”
What Willie Colon meant to say: “Bottom line: I wouldn’t give Geno Smith the keys to my skateboard.”
MOBILE USERS: WATCH ‘RIFFING WITH RAISSMAN’ HERE
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