The Yankees lost consecutive games to the Toronto Blue Jays and their skipper, Joe Girardi, wasn’t happy. His anger, though, didn’t stem from the fact that his pitchers had poor outings, but rather that the Blue Jays, he claimed, were stealing the catcher’s signs. Their sub-par performances, he argued, was due to the fact that the batter’s were being tipped off as to what pitch was coming.
But, let’s be honest: who actually believes Girardi? And even if he is being truthful, what evidence does he have to support his claim? Without any proof, Girardi just sounds foolish for saying it. More significantly, by basing his claim on pure speculation and through his willingness to make this public, he has lost some credibility, and his reputation has taken a hit.
In Jewish literature and thought, our Rabbis remind us about the importance of maintaining a good reputation. To the extent, King Solomon writes, that our reputation is worth more than all the oil in the world. Judaism doesn’t judge a person simply by wins and losses as an owner judges his manager; Judaism looks at the entire person including the manner in which they conduct themselves at home, work, and on vacation.
Girardi, whose reputation precedes him, has taken a step back. I recognize that we all make mistakes. Let’s hope Girardi learns from it and becomes a more polished manager and an even better person.