Aaron Boone trying to mask Yankees’ gloomy reality with a rosy spin

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Brad Penner | USA TODAY Sports
Inna Zeyger
Saturday July 6, 2024

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Yankees manager Aaron Boone’s handling of player mistakes is facing criticism amid recent defensive lapses. Known for his diplomatic responses, the skipper has been accused of being too lenient in public comments about players’ errors.

A notable incident involving center fielder Trent Grisham during a game against the Cincinnati Reds brought this issue to the forefront. Grisham’s apparent lack of urgency in fielding a single resulted in an extra base for the Reds. Aaron Boone’s initial and subsequent comments downplayed the mistake, attributing it to Grisham’s natural ease and talent in the outfield.

“It’s a bad look,” Aaron Boone said on Friday, “but, at the same time, one of the reasons he’s a Gold Glove center fielder is because of his heartbeat, the reads, the jumps, the ease with which he plays the position. So, you don’t want to lose that in there. But with that, just be mindful of certain routine things.

He addressed criticisms of his handling of player mistakes, focusing on center fielder Trent Grisham’s defensive lapse. Aaron Boone confirmed he had a direct conversation with Grisham about the incident, with Grisham admitting he should have made the play.

“Believe me, that lackadaisical look sometimes is what makes Trent Grisham a Gold Glove center fielder. He plays the game with an ease and a flow. Now, catch the ball. We don’t want that guy on second. And it gets magnified a little bit when we’re going through a spell like this.”

This approach has drawn criticism from fans and observers who believe a more direct response is needed. Critics argue that Aaron Boone’s habit of finding positive angles on clear mistakes might undermine the Yankees’ performance and accountability.

Yankees' Trent Grisham makes a defensive error in the ninth against the Reds at Yankee Stadium on July 4, 2024.

Is Aaron Boone saving players to secure his job?

Aaron Boone’s diplomatic style has contributed to his longevity as Yankees manager, now in his seventh year. However, some argue that a more balanced approach, including honest criticism when warranted, could benefit the team. This incident has sparked a debate about the right balance between supporting players and addressing on-field mistakes directly.

The skipper explained his approach to public comments, highlighting his preference for maintaining a positive tone when discussing players with the media. Aaron Boone emphasized the importance of addressing necessary conversations privately rather than reacting emotionally to game outcomes in public.

Aaron Boone concinces Yankees pitcher Carlos Rodon to end his outing against the Reds at Yankee Stadium on July 3, 2024.
Charles Wenzelberg/NYP

Aaron Boone’s diplomatic style reflects a broader trend in baseball management, where many leaders favor a positive public discourse. Known for his natural kindness and optimism, the Yankees manager consistently seeks to highlight the brighter aspects of situations, reserving criticisms for private discussions.

Despite facing external criticism, Aaron Boone maintains his strategy, which sometimes requires careful wording. He even dismissed social media remarks from Aaron Judge’s private hitting coach, Richard Schenck, who criticized the team’s performance and organization.

While some argue Aaron Boone’s method might be too lenient, it aligns with his personal style and current norms in baseball management. He continues to prioritize direct, private communication with players while maintaining a positive public stance, even as the team faces ongoing challenges.

The contrast between Aaron Boone’s diplomatic approach and more candid perspectives on the Yankees’ performance has become a focal point. While some fans and analysts appreciate the blunt opinions, like those from Aaron Judge’s hitting coach Richard Schenck, the Yankees manager continues to take a measured public stance.

Schenck, took to social media to criticize the Yankees’ offensive player development. Schenck highlighted the team’s poor record despite Judge’s MVP-caliber hitting. His candid remarks starkly contrast with the more measured statements from the team, underscoring the growing frustration as the Yankees seek to regain their form.

“People are going to say things and certainly everyone’s entitled their opinion,” Aaron Boone said, “and especially when you go through a tough stretch and you wear this uniform, I know people are going to take shots and things like that, so you can’t get all consumed with all that stuff. We got enough to worry about making sure we’re buttoned up and putting our best foot forward every day.”

The Yankees have struggled significantly, going 4-13 in their last 17 games. More concerning is their inability to hold a lead in their last 11 losses, amounting to at least 99 innings without being ahead.

Aaron Boone’s description of this stretch as a “rough patch” has drawn criticism for understating the team’s difficulties. Observers suggest that a stronger acknowledgment of the team’s struggles is necessary.

The manager also noted the opponents’ ability to capitalize on pitchers’ mistakes, calling it “unfortunate.” Critics argue that such outcomes are expected at the major league level, implying that Aaron Boone’s assessment might be overly lenient.

This difference in tone highlights the ongoing debate about how best to manage and motivate a team amid challenging times. His approach, while consistent with his overall style, continues to be scrutinized as the Yankees attempt to navigate their slump.

The manager of the New York Yankees, Aaron Boone
AP

The New York Yankees are grappling with significant challenges, particularly within their pitching rotation. Key starters Carlos Rodon, Luis Gil, and Marcus Stroman have faltered after promising beginnings, contributing to the team’s recent woes.

Amid these struggles, only a few players have consistently shone. Aaron Judge continues to deliver standout performances reminiscent of Babe Ruth, and Juan Soto has also been a strong contributor. Gerrit Cole’s resurgence offers some hope for the pitching staff.

Aaron Boone’s optimistic assessments contrast sharply with the broader reality of the team’s offensive struggles. Of the ten Yankees with the most plate appearances, only Judge and Soto boast above-average OPS+ ratings, while the other eight fall below league average.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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One thought on “Aaron Boone trying to mask Yankees’ gloomy reality with a rosy spin

  1. RE: “the skipper has been accused of being too lenient in public comments about players’ errors.”

    Boone ISN’T ACCUSED of being too lenient, he IS too lenient in excusing LAZINESS & MORONIC MISTAKES by his players, especially Gleyber Torres.

    DJ waltzed to first in Friday’s game, taking 5.2 seconds to reach 1st, according to the YES channel. When asked after the game whether he, Boone, would talk to DJ about his lack of hustle, Boone gave the reporter A DIRTY LOOK & preceded to OUTRIGHT LIE, claiming DJ did hustle. Excuse me , Dumb*** Boone, but 5.2 seconds to 1st is NOT Hustling! It’s loafing!

    A few years ago, Nitwit Torres got thrown out at third by — literally — half the left side of the infield. After the game, Boonehead was asked if he’d talk to Torres about his base-running mistake, and Boone DEFENDED TORRES & moronically said he didn’t want to curtail Gleyber’s Aggressiveness. STUPID IS NOT AGGRESSIVE. IT’S JUST F**KING STUPID!

    That’s why Torres is still doing dumb sh** years later. Because Boone never publicly admits it when a player does something wrong. He’s always ready to give the player a pass for being lazy or careless. And that’s the reason that a lack of hustle is apparent among some players on this team: because BOONE DOES NOT DEMAND that his players HUSTLE 100% of the time.

    Volpe, who I like a lot, COST US A GAME by not hustling against the Red Sox Friday. Instead of rushing home from 3rd, he stopped to be a spectator; and the LAME EXCUSE we were given afterwards was that Volpe thought it was a foul ball. WHY WOULD BOSTON BE THROWING TO SECOND, AFTER TAGGING 1ST, if it was a foul ball? That was one of the dumbest excuses I’ve ever heard. And if Volpe really thought the ball was foul, why did he eventually trot home?

    The real reason seems to be that Volpe simply didn’t understand the rule about touching home before a force-out & tag-out double-play is completed. Had he run, we would have won that game in 9 innings, 4-3, but instead we lost in extra innings. If we lose the division by 1 game or lose having the best record in the AL by 1 game (and thereby lose home-field advantage), you can point to that game as the reason why.

    That’s the sort of lack of hustle you get when a manager does NOT Demand that his players hustle all the time. THE INDISPUTABLE PROOF OF THAT IS THAT TORRES HAS BEEN DOING DUMB SH** FOR 6+ YEARS NOW because he’s never been publicly chastised for doing that dumb*** sh** by Boone. That’s the equivalent of Boone saying, “Listen, if you wanna f**k-off sometimes, Gleyber, I understand; showboating is more important to you than playing winning baseball.”

    The article noted that “Boone’s diplomatic style reflects a broader trend in baseball management, where many leaders favor a positive public discourse.”

    And how SUCCESSFUL has that approach been? Let’s see:

    * ZERO World Series appearances, and

    * ZERO AL Championships.

    So, the answer is this: Boone’s Approach DOESN’T WORK! His approach is an UTTER FAILURE.

    The best managers in baseball history were the ones who kicked ass if their players didn’t give 100%.

    And spare me the BULLSH** that you can’t treat players that way now. Why? Because they’ll Cry?

    So, Torres gets paid $14.2 MILLION & his Employers can’t demand that he actually try hard for those Millions! Are you f**king kidding me?! How Dumb are the Owners & Managers today? No working man or woman could get away with that sort of shitty attitude without being fired.

    When a player making millions doesn’t hustle, fine him $50,000. He’ll hustle next time! $50K gets your attention, even if you’re making millions. And double the fine for every subsequent offense: that’ll even get the attention of a moron like Gleyber Torres.

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