Originally posted on Rumors and Rants  |  Last updated 10/11/12
In the words of Bill Raftery, “Onions!” Of all the brass-balled coaching moves in sports history, Joe Girardi’s decision to pinch hit for his highest-paid player when trailing by a run in the ninth inning may well go down as one of the boldest — and most successful. Yes, Alex Rodriguez has struggled mightily this postseason, seemingly striking out every other at-bat. (If George Steinbrenner thought Dave Winfield was Mr. May, Lord knows what he’d be calling A-Rod if he was still around.) But no matter how much sense it makes, you just don’t see a manager bench his star player for Raul Freaking Ibanez in these types of situations, ever. OK, maybe there was once. In Game 3 of the 1994 Eastern Conference semifinals, Phil Jackson drew up a last-second shot for Toni Kukoc rather than the Bulls star that season, Scottie Pippen. Pippen was so incensed that he sat on the bench for the final 1.8 seconds, but Phil’s intuition proved correct as Kukoc nailed the shot. These types of moments rarely happen in sports. Even in “Hoosiers” the entire team protests when Norman Dale suggests using Jimmy Chitwood as a decoy on the final shot.  Of course, that isn’t such a fair comparison to the Girardi/A-Rod situation because Chitwood hadn’t missed every other shot he took in the game. Girardi’s bold move paid off yet again in the 12th when Ibanez hit a walk-off homer, the first surrendered by the Orioles all season. It’s a move that looks like it will end up winning this series for the Bronx Bombers, but it will also be interesting to see how it plays going forward. Will A-Rod get the message that he can be replaced and snap out of his funk? Will he become a moody, pouty diva who goes into a shell and makes things awkward in the clubhouse? Or will none of that matter because Ibanez goes on a tear to become the greatest Yankee sub since Lou Gehrig for Wally Pipp? OK, maybe that one’s a stretch. But as of right now, Joe Girardi looks to have made one of the great moves in playoff history.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Sixers already looking to extend Joel Embiid

WATCH: Klay Thompson fails miserably attempting a 360 dunk

Jays closer Roberto Osuna says he’s dealing with anxiety

John McEnroe claims Andy Warhol ruined his sex life

Report: Re-signing Nerlens Noel is Mavericks' top priority

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Bill O'Brien: Deshaun Watson well prepared to run an offense

Dolphins reached out to Peyton Manning about possible comeback

The Baltimore Orioles tied an MLB record they can’t be proud of

Report: Knicks afraid of Porzingis rebelling, hurting their image

Report: Blake Griffin opts out of contract to become free agent

Report: Wolves targeting Kyle Lowry, Jrue Holiday, other point guards in free agency

Best of Yardbarker: Diana Taurasi makes history

The 'Finest running back from America’s Finest City' quiz

Players who need to turn around their season to save their teams

Sports & Politics Intersect: Washington gets a rare win

Three Up, Three Down: Flouting the written and unwritten rules of baseball

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Billy King Award for worst trade

Kicking it: David Villa isn't interested in a 'retirement tour'

Box Score 6/23: Philly continues to trust the process

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Gary Payton Award for best trash talk of the year

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Diana Taurasi makes history

The 'Finest running back from America’s Finest City' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Billy King Award for worst trade

Players who need to turn around their season to save their teams

Three Up, Three Down: Flouting the written and unwritten rules of baseball

Sports & Politics Intersect: Washington gets a rare win

Kicking it: David Villa isn't interested in a 'retirement tour'

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker