Joe Girardi remains bitter, refuses to forgive Astros for 2017 ALCS cheating

Former Yankees skipper Joe Girardi

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Former New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi recently shared his insights on the recent rule changes in Major League Baseball (MLB), particularly focusing on alterations to defensive strategies and the introduction of a pitch clock. Speaking on the “Kevin Harvick’s Happy Hour” podcast, Girardi expressed enthusiastic support for these changes.

Ex-Yankees manager Joe Girardi opens up on 2017 ALCS

Former Yankees skipper Joe Girardi

The former Yankees‘ skipper Joe Girardi highlighted the impact of these adjustments on players’ schedules and physical well-being. He likened the reduction in game time resulting from these changes to playing 20 fewer games per season, emphasizing the significance of minimizing wear and tear on players’ bodies over the course of a grueling 162-game season. Girardi speculated that these changes could potentially extend players’ careers and enhance their performance during the demanding late-season months.

“As far as the injuries, the injuries were happening before the clock at an alarming rate for me, and I think it’s partly because of the size of the players — the max effort that they’re using,” Girardi explained. “All the training that they’re doing, trying to increase everything, their flexibility, their strength… It’s why you see all the injuries.”

Addressing concerns about player injuries, Joe Girardi argued that injuries were occurring even before the implementation of the pitch clock. He attributed the prevalence of injuries to factors such as players’ physical size, maximal effort exerted during gameplay, and the strain placed on pitchers’ arms due to the modern emphasis on velocity and torque. Despite acknowledging advancements in sports medicine that facilitate players’ recoveries, Girardi expressed anticipation of continued challenges related to player injuries in the future.

“The arm is meant to be thrown like a softball, underhand. It’s not meant to go overhand,” Girardi elaborated. “That’s not how our body was designed, and when you start putting the torque and the strength [into it], sometimes, to me, the body just can’t handle it.”

The discussion also delved into the evolving landscape of MLB, with Commissioner Rob Manfred hinting at the imminent introduction of an automated strike zone. Girardi’s commentary extended to the ongoing technological advancements in the sport, including the use of PitchCom to transmit signals between pitchers and catchers, potentially mitigating the need for manual signaling and reducing the risk of sign stealing.

Joe Girardi’s reflection on his final season with Yankees

Former Yankees skipper Joe Girardi

Reflecting on his managerial tenure, Joe Girardi reminisced about his final season with the Yankees, which culminated in a hard-fought American League Championship Series loss to the Houston Astros. He addressed the subsequent revelations of the Astros’ sign-stealing scandal during their 2017 World Series-winning campaign, emphasizing the competitive nature of professional sports and the perpetual quest for strategic advantages.

“I think it [has] been hard,” Girardi reflected. “It was a chance that maybe we had an opportunity to go to the World Series… when you’re playing at such a competitive level, you understand that you have to protect everything, all your signs, all your information as much as possible because everyone’s always looking for an edge.”

Joe Girardi’s remarks underscored the broader theme of adaptability within baseball, acknowledging the ongoing efforts to maintain integrity and competitiveness amid technological advancements and strategic innovations. In 2024, Joe Girardi was announced as a commentator for the Yes Network. As a seasoned former player and manager with extensive experience in the game, Girardi’s perspective offered valuable insights into the ongoing evolution of MLB and the measures undertaken to uphold its traditions while embracing progress.

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