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What would George M. Steinbrenner III do about the 2016 Yankees?

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Is it OK for Steinbrenner to call out Yanks players? (1:14)

The Around the Horn crew shares their thoughts on Hal Steinbrenner calling out Yankees player by name. (1:14)

In his day, George Steinbrenner had a vise grip on the New York tabloid sports world. In the prehistoric time before cell phones, beat reporters were hostages in their hotel rooms or homes, sparingly going for a bite to eat or a bathroom break out of fear of missing The Boss' return call and a back page story.

If the Boss were still around, hovering over the last-place New York Yankees, he would probably have his own Twitter account, blasting off 140-character missives at a frantic pace.

With or without The Boss, the Yankees’ win-loss column probably wouldn’t be any better as they approach the quarter mark of the season, despite Steinbrenner’s legacy as a modern-day King Midas.

In the revisionist history of the Yankees' dear leader, everything he touched turned to championship gold, which glosses over the two banishments from baseball, the bullying, and the fact the Bronx was ecstatic when he was suspended in 1990.

It was during that suspension when the Yankees -- arguably the original MLB tankers -- decided to become frugal, which allowed for the seeds that later produced the Core Four and the bulk of The Boss’ later legacy.

These days, with the much more sedate Hal Steinbrenner, The Boss’ son, in charge, the Yankees are blander and more pragmatic, which doesn’t provide much immediate emotional relief for their currently suffering and angry fans.

"What would The Boss do?" is something you can still hear on social media, sports talk radio and any other place where Yankees fans gather.

So let’s dial up our imagination and ponder what George Steinbrenner would do about the current mess.

Here are 10 moves -- plus one bonus blockbuster -- The Boss might make if he were in charge of the sinking 2016 Yankees.


1. FIRE JOE GIRARDI

The '80s George Steinbrenner would have added Joe Girardi to the long list of managers he fired. Despite Girardi's World Series rings with the Yankees, both as a catcher and as a skipper, Steinbrenner would not go for Girardi's constant defending of players, especially when they don't deserve it.

2. HIRE BOBBY V

The Boss would want to light a fire under his highly paid players. The Yankees' clubhouse is filled with a lot of nice guys, but, as was the case in Boston, Bobby Valentine, a brilliant baseball mind, would probably rub some of them the wrong way. The Boss would like that.

3. HIRE SEAT-FILLERS

The daily eyesore that are the seats behind home plate at Yankee Stadium would drive The Boss nuts. What would he do? He would borrow a page from the TV award shows and hire seat-fillers for the Legends seats.

Despite how sad it is that one of the world’s greatest stadiums would have to resort to Hollywood shenanigans, it would look better and be a tangible response to what has become a source of mockery.

4. FIRE BOBBY V

The Boss soon would get sick of Bobby V. When Steinbrenner was around, there was only one man who could be the center of attention. Valentine creates fires wherever he goes, so Steinbrenner would have to get rid of him.

5. HIRE WALLY BACKMAN

One of the Boss’ trademark moves was attempting to steal the glory from the Mets -- like adding Darryl Strawberry and Doc Gooden, the latter who pitched a no-hitter in Yankees pinstripes, to the Yankees' roster late in their careers. The Mets right now have all the ingredients -- mostly young stud pitching -- to own this town if they don’t mess it up.

While swiping their ex-manager, Valentine, might annoy some Mets fans, many would be envious if Backman -- a beloved member of the 1986 Mets title team currently celebrating its 30th anniversary -- were put in charge in the Bronx. It would be classic George.

6. RIP JACOBY ELLSBURY IN THE MEDIA

Ellsbury’s $153 million contract already looks like it could end up being one of the worst in franchise history. Though the fans and media have noticed, the manager and the front office have allowed for excuses.

If The Boss were around, Ellsbury would not have such a cushy experience cashing his $21 million check each season.

7. FIRE WALLY BACKMAN

Like it is with Girardi and would be with Valentine, it’s the players. The Yankees are suffering through the hangover of the final years of long-term, big-money contracts. Still, Backman would take the fall.

8. MAKE A-ROD PLAYER-MANAGER

The whole Alex Rodriguez-Biogenesis saga was one of the craziest stories in sports history. How much more fun would it have been if the Boss were around to go toe-to-toe with A-Rod and his enablers?

Well, with it all blown over and the Yankees struggling, the Boss would fire Backman and make A-Rod the manager. Rodriguez, 40, only DHs anyway, so he would have plenty of time to implement strategy.

With A-Rod as manager, the Yankees might not be any better, but they would again become one of the most interesting teams in the game.

9. PUT BRIAN CASHMAN ON NOTICE

General manager Brian Cashman has said he doesn’t decorate his Yankee Stadium office because The Boss told him to never feel comfortable. Steinbrenner, in good times, always had a connection with the fans, because he was as demanding as any Bleacher Creature.

Steinbrenner would be yelling about why the Yankees haven’t been able to develop top-of-the-line starting pitching. "What’s wrong with Severino?! Why is Pineda so inconsistent?!"

The list would go on and on and, though Cashman outlasted Steinbrenner, the GM did so because it was during a dynastic run. Cashman would have a hard time keeping his job if Steinbrenner were in his prime.

10. GO AFTER JOHN OLIVER

Steinbrenner would have aggressively responded to HBO talk-show host John Oliver and his Yankee Stadium stunt, perhaps calling him some sort of reptile, as The Boss was known to do.

After the ugliness, the two could have a high-powered powwow and make up via a Visa commercial, as Boss George and Derek Jeter once did. (And as the Boss once did with on-again, off-again Yankees skipper Billy Martin.)

Of course, it would be better if the Yankees still had Jeter and the rest of the Core Four playing in their primes.

BONUS: TRADE OUTFIELD PROSPECT AARON JUDGE

Ken Phelps, anyone?


So there you have it. If the Boss were still around, the Yankees would likely still be in last place, but they would be a much more fascinating, headline-grabbing sports soap opera.

Do you have a better idea(s) for The Boss? Tweet it out using the hashtag #BossGeorge2016, or add it to the comments section.