NEW YORK — Joe Girardi and Brian Cashman stood a few feet from each other on the red carpet near the World Series trophy, wearing blue jeans and sports jackets without ties. They were dressed for success, if not for a gala.
While an elegantly attired crowd assembled across the street on a similar carpet for the International Emmy Awards, the Yankees manager and general manager attended Monday night's premiere of this year's World Series film.
"Someone asked me what I was wearing. I had no idea what it meant," said Girardi, uncomfortable with the camera flashes.
With free-agent signing season already open, the Yankees quickly are putting behind their first Series title since 2000 and turning their attention to 2010. Andy Pettitte, Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon became free agents, and New York must decide whether it wants to re-sign the trio, all 35 and up.
"I'll talk to our guys first, and after I have my conversations with our guys then I'll be full-blown into the marketplace," Cashman said. "I'm trying to be very careful and respectful to our players first and try to make sure they're aware of where they are in the process."
Cashman has finished his internal scouting meetings and is discussing budget with the Steinbrenner family. While no names of free agents have been mentioned, Girardi gave a hint the Yankees may be interested in adding John Lackey, the top available free-agent pitcher, to a rotation that includes CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett.
"I think the first thing you have to address is our rotation," Girardi said.
New York already has met with Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman, a 21-year-old left-hander who throws 100 mph. Chapman, who also has talked with the Red Sox and Mets, fired agent Edwin Mejia last week and hired brothers Randy and Alan Hendricks.
With a core that includes shortstop Derek Jeter (35), third baseman Alex Rodriguez (34), catcher Jorge Posada (38) and closer Mariano Rivera (40 on Nov. 29), the Yankees are a relatively old team.
"I'm thankful that we won with a lot of older guys that stayed healthy," Cashman said. "Outside (Chien-Ming) Wang and (Xavier) Nady, almost everything that we touched this year worked out for us in our favor, and that's why we're here today, you know, in New York City, showing the World Series video."
Girardi was looking forward to the movie, primarily because he knew the ending.
"That's why it's probably a little bit more relaxing this time," he said.