Joe Girardi was asked about how his managing strategy developed and he credited his time with Don Zimmer;
Fortunately for the new Yankee skipper, he'd spent plenty of time with a manager who had run his team the same way: Don Zimmer.
Zimmer is one of the managers Girardi recognizes as his greatest influences, especially when it came to his penchant for taking risks. How many other managers put the hit-and-run on with the bases loaded? How about a squeeze play in that same situation?
"There was a risk in Zim's game," Girardi says of the man who managed him with the Cubs from 1989-1991. "He didn't always manage from a piece of paper; he would manage from his guts and his heart. He was a gambler."
So now even a guy who served under Joe is crediting Zimmer not Joe for helping him grow. Girardi does go on to say;
"Joe Torre was great at getting the most out of people and handling people," Girardi says. "There was that calmness there every day in a world that wasn't always so calm."
Not exactly the praise a hall of fame manager would expect from the guy who replaced him. The legend of Joe has continued to take a hit this spring and it will be interesting to see how he will be remembered if the Yankees do very well this year and LA doesn't. Either way a lot has come out this year about the faults of Torre and it seems that everyone was just keeping quiet on them the last couple of years. The energy this spring combined with the almost daily 'bash Torre' news makes it clear a change was long overdue.