ORLANDO, Fla. -- Satisfied that he accomplished as much as possible during the General Managers Meetings, Brian Cashman checked out of the hotel on Wednesday, eager to board his flight back to New York and resume the search for the Yankees' next manager on Thursday morning at Yankee Stadium.
"There was no managerial stuff down here, and we did that for a reason," Cashman said. "I didn't want it to interfere with connections with other clubs and the information gathering that we could provide. We tried to squeeze as much communication with the opposing clubs and the occasional agent dialogue into the small window when we were down here."
Cashman said that he is continuing to work from a list of hopefuls and that interviews will take place both on Thursday and Friday, though he is not publicly revealing or confirming his candidates until after they have been interviewed.
Rob Thomson and Eric Wedge have already been summoned to New York, while Aaron Boone, Jerry Hairston Jr., Hensley Meulens and Chris Woodward are among those who have been contacted by the Yankees. David Cone and John Flaherty have also expressed interest in the position. Cashman and Carlos Beltran have spoken often, but Beltran does not appear to be a fit at this time.
"We're just looking for someone that has the skill set to manage a 162-game season and collaborate with various levels of our front office, from analytics to medical and performance science, player development, pro scouting," Cashman said. "There's a lot of information streams and trust that needs to take place, too.
"… You're just looking for a very open-minded, collaborative person, which I thought Joe Girardi was, which I thought Joe Torre prior to that was. Our process is going to be looking for someone that's got a number of areas that check most of those boxes. There's no perfect candidate out there. It could be older than what I already had, it could be younger. It could be the same age. Joe Girardi wasn't deficient, really, in any specific category."
Because all 29 other clubs have a manager, Cashman said that the Yankees have no set date by which they must name theirs. He said that it would not be an issue if the team reached the Dec. 10-14 Winter Meetings without having done so.
"Time is not an enemy here, because there's no competition, so I have a chance to be patient," Cashman said. "There's a lot of information to gather as I go through this process. You can learn about a lot of really good baseball people out there that are highly recommended for various reasons. I think that's a helpful thing too, to get exposure to some of the game's respected people."
Cashman said that the combination of technology and lieutenants like Jim Hendry, Michael Fishman and Tim Naehring make it possible to balance a manager search while attempting to upgrade the team on the field. The Yankees' roster appears to be largely set; Todd Frazier, Jaime Garcia, Matthew Holliday, Michael Pineda and Carsten Sabathia were their only notable free agents.
"Compared to previous Novembers, we're in a better place," Cashman said. "We have the ability to be patient, because we feel we have pieces in all places. I'm not really desperate and rushing against time and competition. We might not be crazy busy in terms of results, but we'll still be aggressively engaging other clubs to make sure that we don't miss opportunities."