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Yankees offer job to Girardi

Former Marlins skipper to follow Torre as manager

Posted: Monday October 29, 2007 12:16PM; Updated: Monday October 29, 2007 10:30PM
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Joe Girardi (right), who served on the Yankees' coaching staff with Don Mattingly in 2005, has apparently beaten out Mattingly for the manager's job.
Joe Girardi (right), who served on the Yankees' coaching staff with Don Mattingly in 2005, has apparently beaten out Mattingly for the manager's job.
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By Jon Heyman, SI.com

Joe Girardi and the Yankees are believed to be putting the finishing touches on a contract to make him the 34th manager in the franchise's storied 107-year history.

It is thought that Girardi's deal will pay him $6 million over three years, or perhaps a little bit more than that.

An official announcement could come as early as Tuesday.

Girardi, the ex-Yankees manager and current Yankees broadcaster, would replace legendary manager Joe Torre, who opted not to accept the Yankees' offer to return for a one-year deal with an option. Torre is believed to be a candidate for the Dodgers managing job currently occupied by Grady Little. While Little was given a vote of confidence at season's end, it appears his job status is tenuous.

The Yankees offered Girardi the job on Monday after general manager Brian Cashman's recommendation was accepted by the ruling Steinbrenner sons, Hank and Hal. It is perhaps the first time the managerial call was not made by principal owner George Steinbrenner, not counting the time he was suspended.

Girardi, a former Yankees catcher and the 2006 Manager of the Year with the Marlins, had to beat out Yankees icon and George Steinbrenner favorite Don Mattingly, plus Yankees coach Tony Pena.

While Mattingly was said to have been "impressive'' in the interview, it appears Girardi, currently a broadcaster with Fox and the Yankees' own YES Network, may have bowled over the Yankees' baseball staff. Girardi is a hot commodity in the baseball community, having turned down the Orioles to be their manager and the Nationals for an interview.

"Don was extremely disappointed to learn today that he wasn't the organization's choice to fill the managerial vacancy," Mattingly's agent, Ray Schulte, said in an e-mail. "Instead, he was informed the organization offered the position to Joe Girardi."

Schulte said Mattingly told the Yankees he isn't interested in a coaching position next year, and he also extended Girardi his congratulations and best wishes.

ESPN-1050 Radio in New York first reported news of the offer Monday.

Girardi caught for the Yankees from 1996-99, served as a bench coach in 2005, then managed the Marlins the following year and was NL manager of the year. He kept a young team in contention until September, then was fired after apparently clashing with owner Jeffrey Loria and others above him.

Girardi was the first person to interview to replace Torre, who managed the Yankees to the playoffs in each of his 12 seasons with the team. He spent about five hours with the Yankees' baseball operations staff last week, and an hour with George Steinbrenner, his sons, son-in-law Felix Lopez and team president Randy Levine.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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