A bitterly disappointing 2023 season left many Yankees fans calling for heads to roll, but so far, it doesn’t seem like they’re going to get their wish. Brian Cashman’s job as head of New York’s front office is already about as safe as can be, and a report from Andy Martino on Monday suggests that manager Aaron Boone will also be returning in 2024.
Sources: Aaron Boone expected to return as Yankees manager.https://t.co/oc1JDgdHKY— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) October 2, 2023
Martino reports that Yankees execs will convene in Tampa on Wednesday for a postmortem on where things went wrong this year — discussions that will include Boone, who the team doesn’t plan to fire despite calls for his job over the last couple of months. It’s unclear whether that decision will come with a contract extension: Boone is set to enter the final year of his deal in 2024, and it’s rare for teams to allow managers to play out their contract years.
Given what’s at stake for Boone and the rest of the current Yankees regime next season, though, Hal Steinbrenner may be willing to make an exception. Pretty much everything that could go wrong, did go wrong for New York in 2023, as they finished a distant fourth in the AL East, missed the playoffs for the first time since 2016 and just narrowly avoided their first losing season in over 30 years. Granted, some of that was outside Boone’s control: Aaron Judge missed a big chunk of time with hip and toe injuries, as did Anthony Rizzo and Giancarlo Stanton, while Carlos Rodon was out until July and then struggled to live up to his lofty contract when he did make his debut. (Between Rodon, Luis Severino, Nestor Cortes and Frankie Montas, 80% of the team’s projected Opening Day rotation missed some or all of 2023 due to injury.)
Still, it’s only natural for the manager to take some heat when a team comes in so far below preseason expectations, and it’s not like Boone’s tenure in the Bronx has been unimpeachable. He clearly enjoys a good relationship with Cashman, though, and crucially, he hasn’t lost the locker room — New York played hard all year, even when they were out of the Wild Card picture, and Aaron Judge went to bat for his manager just last week.