New York Yankees team owner Hal Steinbrenner says coach Joe Giradi and others will not lose their jobs regardless of the outcome this season.
“Are jobs riding on this? Not that I know of. Jobs are not riding on this,” Steinbrenner told the New York Daily News outside the Yankees’ clubhouse before Monday’s series opener against the Red Sox. “But that’s not something I’m concerned about right now. We’ll look at everything in the offseason, as we always do.”
The Yankees playoff position will come down to the final week of the regular season after giving up a 10-game lead in the American League East. The Yankees will either enter the playoffs as the division winner or as a wild card.
The Yanks are tied with Baltimore atop the division. If the teams remain tied, they will play a one-game playoff in Baltimore. The loser will enter the postseason as one of two wild cards with the possibility of a one-game elimination.
“I think we’d all like a bit more breathing room. We’ve got zero breathing room,” Steinbrenner said. “Look, it’s tense. It’s tense. There’s a lot we expect of them and there’s a lot riding on this and a lot riding on doing well. We all feel obligated to our fans and succeeding on their behalf. So, it’s at times stressful.
“But there is nothing surprising about this division that it’s this close. Buck (Showalter has) done a great job in Baltimore, they’ve been on us the whole year. Toronto had their share of injuries as well but this always has been one of the toughest divisions in baseball, always will be. I never expect to ever run away in this division.”
Steinbrenner, the 42-year-old son of late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner said he never felt comfortable even with a 10-game lead.
“It’s funny, Andy (Pettitte) and I were texting about two, three months ago when we had the 10-game lead and I said, ‘We really need you back (from the disabled list) and we need your leadership because I have a feeling this is going to be a lot closer.’ He agreed, and it is,” Steinbrenner said. “We built up that 10-game lead and it was a great thing. But we’ve had our share of injuries, as other clubs did, you know, it is what it is.
“But the bottom line right now is with three left, we’re in first place -- tied for first place -- and we’re going to have to get the job done.”