They feel he is important to one of their core goals: Making it more enjoyable to play for the most storied team in the history of professional sports.
No, seriously. From SNY:
If Boone’s relentless positivity when talking about players rankles many fans, the organization considers him an important firewall between those players and the relentless negativity emanating from just about everywhere else.
In fact, the front office wants to find a way to make the experience of being a Yankee more enjoyable, which it wasn’t for many this year. Most see Boone as part of that solution.
SNY’s reporting comes hours after NJ Advance Media reported people close to the Yankees believe slugger Aaron Judge’s displeasure with fans and local media could spur him to leave in free agency. Judge was reportedly upset with how Joey Gallo and Aaron Hicks were treated during their objectively awful seasons in the Bronx. And he likely didn’t appreciate the boos sent his way in the postseason.
It’s nothing out of the ordinary for employers to take measures to enhance the work experience for their employees. They do so in an effort to attract and retain talent and with the belief it will lead to more productivity. Some places get a foosball table or provide free bagels on Fridays. The Yankees go out and claim Isiah Kiner-Falefa deserves a Gold Glove. Different strokes for different folks.
If the Yankees believe Boone’s ability to relate to the clubhouse compensates for his in-game tactical skills, that’s fine. But this is New York and these are the Yankees. The World Series is the expectation. When you achieve it, you will walk on water. When you don’t, the seas will get rough. That’s how it always has and always will work. It’s part of the deal. You cannot create a negativity shield and act like you are playing in a cow town.
James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]