NEW YORK – Joe Girardi has agreed to a three-year contract to manage the New York Yankees.
The agreement to take over as Joe Torre's replacement is worth an average salary of at least $2 million annually, a baseball official said Tuesday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the team had not yet announced the deal.
Girardi was the 2006 NL Manager of the Year with Florida, plus he has a pinstriped pedigree. The hard-nosed catcher played on three Yankees teams that won the World Series, served as their bench coach and was a TV announcer this year.
"Joe Girardi is a good man," Torre said Monday on "Late Show with David Letterman." "He's got a feel for this organization."
Girardi's agreement was first reported by ESPN.com.
Once he was informed Monday that the Yankees had chosen Girardi, Don Mattingly told the team he had no interest in returning next year as bench coach or in any other coaching position.
Beloved as team captain, Donnie Baseball was the early favorite to replace Torre and openly coveted the spot. Instead, the Yankees picked experience over popularity, choosing Girardi even at the risk Mattingly would walk away from the franchise.
"Don was extremely disappointed to learn today that he wasn't the organization's choice to fill the managerial vacancy," Mattingly's agent, Ray Schulte, said in an e-mail. "Instead, he was informed the organization offered the position to Joe Girardi."
Still, spurning Mattingly -- who always receives one of the loudest ovations on Old-Timers' Day -- was sure to be compared to another famous Yankee snub: Babe Ruth was never offered the manager's job he so desperately wanted.
Mattingly was the Yankees hitting coach for three years before moving next to Torre this season. Schulte said Mattingly congratulated Girardi and wished him well.
Girardi also beat out Yankees first-base coach Tony Pena, who had the most managerial experience of the candidates.
Girardi caught for the Yankees from 1996-99, served as a bench coach in 2005, then managed the Marlins the following year. He kept a young team in contention until September and then was fired, apparently for clashing with owner Jeffrey Loria and others above him.
The 43-year-old Girardi often told many in the Marlins about how the Yankees did things, reinforcing the winning ways he learned in New York. Now, he'll get a chance to try them out himself.