The Yankees met with Joe Girardi today as expected and word is the team made Girardi an offer to return to the storied franchise. Girardi accompanied by his agent Steve Mandell also gave the Yankees some parameters for his return and the sides agreed to meet again Thursday. There had been some speculation Girardi might even take a year off to maybe do TV work but his willingness to discuss even estimations of an asking price may suggest he plans to be back managing somewhere. While contract negotiations are never a sure thing all things seem positive so far. Most folks around the game suggest they'd be surprised if Girardi left the Yankees (though that doesn't come close to guaranteeing it of course). Girardi will have plenty of outside interest likely from the Cubs and possibly others. The Nationals are another big-market team that has a managerial opening. One team that's been speculated on for Girardi the Dodgers are apparently not a real possibility as sources suggest that the L.A. plan to bring Don Mattingly back as manager of the Dodgers next year. People close to the team say the club option that has yet to be picked up is a "non-issue" and that the Dodgers are committed to meeting with Mattingly and bringing him back after the year whether that be by picking up the option are giving him a longer extension. Mattingly for his part said he is unworried about his own situation and focused on the team's task as they start their playoff series here in Atlanta. Girardi's situation is the one meriting real news. His current three-year contract that is believed to pay him $3 million per year is up at the end of this month. So he'd need permission to talk to the Cubs or any other team until then. He has ties to the Cubs the team that drafted him out of Peoria Ill. and Northwestern and employed him his first few years in the big leagues. Late longtime Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times baseball columnist Jerome Holtzman used to call Girardi "Northwestern Joe" and Mandell is based out of Chicago but Girardi donwplayed his ties to the area when asked about the Cubs recently mentioning that both his parent are now gone.