Joe Girardi will not return as the New York Yankees’ manager in 2018, he and the club confirmed in statements issued to news media outlets on Thursday.
“With a heavy heart, I come to you because the Yankees have decided not to bring me back," Girardi said, confirming reports of his somewhat startling departure.
The Yankees fell one game short of reaching the World Series this season, losing to the Houston Astros in the American League Championship Series in seven games. They posted a 91-71 record this season, marking the fifth season in Girardi’s tenure in which they won 90 games or more.
Girardi was in the final year of a four-year, $16-million contract. The New York Post reported Wednesday that Girardi was set to meet with general manager Brian Cashman Thursday to discuss his future with the organization. Cashman's three-year contract is also set to expire.
"I want to thank Joe for his 10 years of hard work and service to this organization,” said Cashman in a statement released by the club. “Everything this organization does is done with careful and thorough consideration, and we’ve decided to pursue alternatives for the managerial position.”
“As Hal Steinbrenner and I mentioned to Joe directly this week, he has been a tremendous Yankee on the field and away from it, as a player, coach and manager. He has a tireless work ethic, and put his heart into every game he managed over the last decade. He should take great pride in our accomplishments during his tenure, and I wish Joe and his family nothing but success and happiness in the future."
Girardi declined to speak about his future after a Game 7 loss to the Astros. He'd drawn the ire of fans and media after several moves in a Division Series loss to the Cleveland Indians backfired, but the team rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win the best-of-five series.
It's not a bad time for Girardi to hit the market: The Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies both seek managers, and top candidates Alex Cora and Mickey Callaway already took jobs with the Boston Red Sox and New York Mets, respectively.
"I've had 10 great years here," Girardi said after the ALCS Game 7 loss. I feel extremely blessed. God has been good to me. And we'll see what the future holds."
Girardi leaves the organization with a managerial record of 910-710 over 10 seasons, including a World Series title in 2009. The 53-year-old also previously served as manager of the Miami Marlins after a 15-year playing career with the Yankees, Chicago Cubs, Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals.
Girardi joins Dusty Baker, formerly of the Nationals, and John Farrell, formerly of the Red Sox, as managers who led their teams to the postseason this fall but are now unemployed.
ESPN 1000 first reported the news of Girardi's departure Thursday morning, citing league sources.