Gi­rardi, Cash­man praised by Hal

The Trentonian (Trenton, NJ) - - SPORTS - By Mark Didtler

TAMPA, FLA. >> Yankees owner Hal Stein­bren­ner doesn’t plan on talk­ing with Joe Gi­rardi about a new con­tract in the near fu­ture but spoke highly of the man­ager’s per­for­mance.

Gi­rardi is in the fi­nal sea­son of a $16 mil­lion, four-year deal and is be­gin­ning his 10th sea­son as Yankees man­ager.

“We love Joe,” Stein­bren­ner said Wed­nes­day af­ter the team’s first work­out this year. “Look, Joe is one of many peo­ple who work in this or­ga­ni­za­tion that have con­tracts, and I treat all of them the same. I don’t deal with it un­til the con­tract is close to up or is up. I’m sure we’ll be talk­ing, maybe, to­ward the end of the year.”

Gen­eral man­ager Brian Cash­man is also in the fi­nal sea­son of his con­tract.

“I think he’s done great,” Stein­bren­ner said. “The changes we made in player devel­op­ment the last few years, which he over­sees, I think we’re in a good place right now. But now we’ve got to prove our­selves.”

New York, which missed the play­offs three of the last four years, has put its fu­ture in the hands of young play­ers that in­clude catcher Gary Sanchez, first base­man Greg Bird, in­fielder/out­fielder Tyler Austin and out­fielder Aaron Judge. Pitch­ers Jus­tus Sh­effield and James Ka­prielian, and short­stop Gley­ber Tor­res are in the pipe­line.

“This is a time of new hope, spring train­ing, and a whole new sea­son,” Stein­bren­ner said. “This feels dif­fer­ent. I mean, we’ve got a great crop of good young play­ers and a good crop of veter­ans as well. It’s a great mix.”

“What hasn’t changed is we’re al­ways go­ing to field a cham­pi­onship-cal­iber team,” Stein­bren­ner added. “If money comes off the pay­roll, we’re go­ing to do our best to put it back into the team as we did this year. We’re al­ways go­ing to make sure that we’ve got a mix of mar­que vet­eran proven tal­ent along with the young play­ers.”

Stein­bren­ner has high ex­pec­ta­tions for 2017.

“Whether or not peo­ple think we have a chance or don’t have a chance, that’s up to them,” Stein­bren­ner said. “As far as these guys, they ab­so­lutely be­lieve they a chancer and will come to play.”

THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

Man­ager Joe Gi­rardi has the back­ing of Yankees owner Hal Steine­bren­ner.

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