NYY manager candidates: Boone joins fray

NYY manager candidates: Boone joins fray

When the Yankees announced Joe Girardi would not be returning for an 11th season at the helm, the managerial vacancy for one of baseball's most storied franchises immediately became one of the biggest stories of the Hot Stove season.

It's been the subject of much speculation and rumors, and several candidates have already emerged. Below is a closer look at the latest developments and some of the names in the mix for the job as the Yankees continue their search.

Aaron Boone
Boone emerged Thursday night as another candidate for the job. ESPN's Buster Olney first reported the news, and a source confirmed the report to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand.

Boone, 44, is an analyst for ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball. The former infielder played 12 seasons in the big leagues, including part of the 2003 campaign with the Yankees. After arriving in a midseason trade with the Reds, Boone left his mark on Yankees history with his walk-off home run in Game 7 of the 2003 American League Championship Series against the Red Sox, sending them to the World Series.

Rob Thomson
The Yankees began their search Wednesday by interviewing bench coach Thomson for the role, MLB.com's Bryan Hoch reported.

Thomson, 54, has spent 28 seasons in the organization, beginning as a Minor League coach in 1990. He joined Girardi's staff in 2008 as bench coach, then spent six seasons as third-base coach from 2009-14 before returning to the bench in '15.

Thomson on Yankees interview

Thomson has also served as vice president of Minor League development and special assignment instructor for former manager Joe Torre.

"I'm not sure if I convinced them of it, but I am a new voice, I am a fresh voice," Thomson said Thursday. "As much as I respect Joe [Girardi], everybody is a little bit different. They have different ways of going about their business. One of my strengths is the trust that the players have in me, I believe. And I think that's one of the things that kind of stands out."

David Cone and John Flaherty
Former Yankees and current YES Network broadcasters Cone and Flaherty both expressed interest in the job Wednesday night at an annual baseball fundraising dinner hosted by Torre.

It's not known if the Yankees are considering either for the role, but general manager and senior vice president Brian Cashman has said he intends to cast a wide net in this search.

"I wanted to make sure [Cashman] knew I was interested, and whatever happens from there, I am totally fine," said Flaherty, who played three seasons for the Yankees from 2003-05. "I just wanted for my own personal well-being to know that I threw my hat in the ring. I'm at a point in my life where I'm open to doing a lot of things."

Cone pitched 17 seasons in the Major Leagues from 1986-2003, earning five All-Star nods and five World Series rings, including four with the Yankees under Torre.

Cone open to managing Yankees

"I've talked to Brian a couple times over the last couple of weeks, and I've let him know that I support the Yankees," said Cone, who played for the Yankees from 1995-2000. "I'd do anything I could to help. If requested, I would not turn down an interview."

Jerry Hairston Jr.
Hairston is yet another former Yankees player in the running. A source recently told MLB.com that the club has reached out to Hairston regarding the job.

Hairston, 41, retired in 2013 after 16 Major League seasons. He spent part of one of those seasons in New York, winning a World Series with the Yankees in '09. He's now serving as a Dodgers studio analyst for Spectrum SportsNet LA.

The rest
The following names have also been connected to the position in various media reports:

Jay Bell, former Major Leaguer manager of the Class A Advanced Tampa Yankees
Trey Hillman, former Royals manager (2008-10) and current manager of the SK Wyverns in Korea
Raul Ibanez, former Major Leaguer and current special assistant to Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman
Pete Mackanin, former Pirates (2005), Reds (2007) and Phillies (2015-17) manager
Josh Paul, manager of the Class A short-season Staten Island Yankees
Al Pedrique, manager of Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders
Tony Pena, Yankees first-base coach and former Royals manager (2002-05)
Reggie Willits, Yankees outfield and baserunning coordinator
David Ross, former Major League catcher

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.