Passion they say is like a driving force, it pushes you to be the best you can be and one man who is passionate about the things he does is none other than former baseball catcher and manager, Joseph Elliot Girardi, who is professionally known and addressed as Joe Girardi.
Before his managerial career, Girardi played professional baseball for MLB’s Chicago Cubs, the Colorado Rockies, the St. Louis Cardinals, and the New York Yankees, which he would later coach for almost a decade. He won World Series Championships thrice as a player with the Yankees and once with the same team as their manager. He is so passionate about the game of baseball that he thrives well even under unfavorable working conditions. So sit tight and get to know more of Joe Girardi.
Joseph Elliott Girardi was born on the 14th day of October 1964 in Peoria, Illinois, into the family of Jerry and Angela Girardi. He is the fourth of his parents’ five children; he has three brothers (Gerald, George, and John) and a sister (Maria). His father was a U.S Air Force veteran and a former blue-collar worker.
He attended several schools while growing up; first, it was the East Peoria’s Neil Armstrong grade school and then Peoria’s Sacred Heart/Father Sweeney, where he learned to play the game of basketball under the tutelage of his own father. Joe would later attend Academy of Our Lady/Spalding Institute, Peoria, Illinois, where his love for baseball was ignited. While in Our Lady/Spalding Institute, he played in the school’s baseball team, as well in its football team but he took particular interest in baseball.
After high school, he attended Northwestern University, Illinois, where he played for the school’s baseball team as a catcher. He later bagged a degree in Industrial Engineering but rather than pursuing a career in his field of study, he chose to become a professional baseball player.
He began his career in 1986 after the Chicago Cubs drafted him into their minor league. After 4 seasons in the minor league, he was promoted to the major league where he made his debut in 1989 and from then on till now his career has been much of a huge success, he has racked up amazing statistic in the course of his career as a baseball player with a batting average of .267 per game and 36 home run. Other clubs he played for besides Chicago cubs were Colorado Rockies, New York Yankees and St. Louis Cardinal.
In 2003, he retired from playing baseball after sixteen games and batting .130 with one RBI for St. Louis Cardinals that season. He then went on to become a commentator on YES Network, his good job as the host of a 2004 youth-oriented Yankees on Deck, earned him good reviews and an opportunity on the 2005 Yankee broadcasts, but he turned down the offer as well as another offer to become the Florida Marlins’ bench coach which came with a future offer of becoming the team’s manager in 2006. He rather chose to become Yankees’ bench coach and at the same time, he was hosting Kids on Deck which he shot before the spring training.
YES promoted Kids on Deck by showing Girardi sitting in the dugout at intervals during games. The following year, he became a broadcaster for Fox during the World Series alongside Kevin Kennedy and Jeanne Zelasko. After the 2005 regular season, Joe Girardi replaced Jack McKeon as manager of the Marlins, and he continued coaching the team until late 2017. As the coach of the team, he led them to a 78–84 record and earned the 2006 National League Manager of the Year Award, as well as the Sporting News Manager of the Year Award for National League.
In 2007, Joe Girardi was offered Sam Perlozzo’s job after he was fired as Baltimore Orioles but he turned it down. In that year, Yankees’ managerial position became vacant, he interviewed for the position and was soon named the team’s new manager. He signed a 3-year contract with the team worth $7.5 million.
Girardi wore shirt number 27 signifying his wish to lead the team to their 27th World championship, he was so determined at achieving this that to ensure his players are fit to give in their best, he banned sweets and soda in the clubhouse. His first season with the Yankees wasn’t as successful as he expected as they got eliminated in the postseason contention for the first time in fourteen years. The team ended that season with an 89–73 record, and ending 3rd in the AL East.
However, his second season was an improved version of the previous; he led the team to win the World Series title making it his first World Series title as a manager. His stint as a manager for the Yankees was a huge success for his career as he spent nine seasons with the Yankees. His contract was not renewed in 2017 so he was replaced by Aaron Boone. In 2018, he joined MLB Network as an analyst.
Joe Girardi’s Family: Wife Daughter, Son
The former Yankee’s coach who is of Italian descent has been married to Kimberly Innocenzi since 1990. The couple met at Northwestern University. Kim had lost her earring and Joe helped her find it, after that the two became friends and began bonding and today, the rest they say is history. The couple has three children together – two daughters (Serena and Lena) and a son named Dante.
While his son decided to follow in his footsteps (he played as a batsman in high school), his daughter Serena has decided to carve out a niche for herself in the movie industry. They are devoted Christians and currently live in Purchase, New York.
Height, Weight, And Body Stats
Physical fitness tends to make one look younger than his/her age and this is exactly Joe’s case, he so physically fit that one would doubt his age save for the few grey hairs which may give him out.
The sportsman is well shaped, though not the tallest of the coaches, he stands at a height 5 ft 11 in and weighs 91 kg. He has a broad shoulder, a narrow hip, and a flat hardened stomach. He also has this thick forearm muscles which he developed as a child while helping his bricklayer father.