As of 9:30 last night, MacPhail said, contract talks hadn't begun. … Still, all indications are that the job is Girardi's to accept. … Not having interviewed any other candidates fuels the perception that Girardi is the Orioles' man.
-- The Sun, Thursday, June 21
The coronation of Joe Girardi, former manager of the Marlins and current TV analyst for the Yankees, as the new Orioles manager sure is stalling longer than the Bay Bridge on the Fourth of July.
That leaves us to wonder about a few things:
1. Ever since his 2006 N.L. Manager of the Year award made him a hot commodity, could Girardi be holding out for a deal like Roger Clemens enjoys? He’ll only manage the O’s when they’re in New York or Chicago, where he has roots.
2. Why would anyone want to manage the Orioles, anyway? (This isn’t a joke. This is a serious question.)
3. Will Girardi get the same free pass his first year as was afforded Leo Mazzone in 2006? The pitching guru arrived in Baltimore last spring with high expectations that he could wave his magic wand and turn the Orioles pitchers into clones of those from his Atlanta years. Except it didn’t work out that way.
[Last year, only Kansas City pitchers walked more batters or had a worse ERA. But so far in 2007, the Orioles are sixth in the league in ERA, fifth in strikeouts and have allowed the fourth fewest homers. All this despite still leading the league in walks.]
4. Rick Dempsey says he’d love to manage the O’s. What would satisfy (or even excite?) more fans: Girardi at the helm or Dempsey as skipper of a team that simultaneously restores “Baltimore” to its road jerseys?
5. No matter who’s put in charge, could they please tell Kevin Millar to put his bat where his mouth is?