The New York Yankees bowed out of the postseason this season in disappointing fashion yet again, failing to advance to the World Series under manager Aaron Boone.
This marked the fourth consecutive season that the Yankees failed to win the American League pennant after General Manager Brian Cashman declared them a “fully operational death star.”
Boone took over the Yankees in 2018 and while the team’s regular season record has been impressive — they are 427-281 for a .603 winning percentage under Boone — postseason success has been harder to come by.
That’s part of the motivation for what Yankees legend Mariano Rivera said at the Sports Forum of the Panamanian Association of Business Executives.
According to the New York Post, Rivera came out in favor of letting him go.
“If I’m the owner, Aaron Boone wouldn’t stay,” Rivera said. “When things don’t come out the way we want them to all of the fault goes on to the manager and somebody has to pay the price and we won’t put that on the players.”
While Derek Jeter doesn’t necessarily agree with him, Mariano Rivera has a point.
What to do with Aaron Boone?
While the players have to execute on the field, and Boone can only work with what he’s given by the front office, there is something to be said about the Yankees’ dramatic collapse in the second half, and his sometimes questionable bullpen management.
Whatever impact managers have on the game is ultimately limited, but bullpens are their biggest responsibility.
Boone hasn’t always done the best job in crunch time, although disappointing postseason offense from Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and others were also key contributors to their early exit.
The Judge free agency saga could be another major problem under his watch, although if he leaves, there might be blame to share with the Yankees fans themselves after booing him this month.
The playoffs are also plagued by randomness, something that managers are unable to control.
At the end of the day, the team has still underperformed, leading to justifiable criticism. Despite a recent extension and votes of confidence from ownership, it seems like the 2023 season will be a make or break year for Boone.
If the Yankees don’t at least get back to the World Series for the first time since 2009, Rivera might just get his wish.