“He messed up in life,” Yankees first baseman Luke Voit said following German’s public apology on Wednesday. “I don’t condone any of the things he did. He’s getting a second chance at this. We have his back but he’s skating on thin ice and he needs to get his life together. I think he’s doing the right steps to do so, but again, he’s got to prove to us he can do that.”
Last fall, Hal Steinbrenner, the team’s managing general partner, said in a radio interview for German to return he needed to feel comfortable with German being both sorry for his actions and that he had turned his life around. German said he hadn’t spoken with Steinbrenner, but Cashman and Boone have twice had long conversations with him.
“He has done enough to earn the opportunity to be here and to compete and to be a part of this team,” Boone said. “Now the proof is in the daily life that he leads.”
German, who at one point during his news conference mentioned his partner by name, said he remains with her. He said the counseling mandated by M.L.B. as part of its treatment program has helped him improve his relationship with her.
Asked what he had done to make sure his partner felt safe, he said, “We have had a lot of conversations about how this won’t happen again. We’re going to have better communication at home.”
German said he remained on good terms with Britton and appreciated the advice he has received from him. He said he wants to talk to younger players about how to avoid the pitfalls of his life. Over the past year and a half away from the Yankees, he said he has learned to think before he acts, to avoid bad habits and to seek help should he feel trouble arising.
As far as fans or teammates who may never see him the same way again or who feel uncomfortable cheering for him, German said, “I’m willing to change, to be a different person and I’ll show that with my actions and my deeds.”