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Joe Torre is Out

He was offered a one year, $5 million contract, and he rejected it.

Joe Torre is out as manager of the New York Yankees, rejecting a substantial pay cut after the team failed to make it past the first round of the playoffs for the third straight year.

Torre turned down a $5 million, one-year contract Thursday that still would have made him the highest paid manager in baseball.

Bench coach Don Mattingly is the leading contender to replace Torre, who led the Yanks to 12 straight playoff appearances and won four World Series championships. Yankees broadcaster Joe Girardi, the NL Manager of the Year with Florida in 2006, is another top contender.

"It's a difficult day," general manager Brian Cashman said.

But it was one Yankees' fans could see coming.

After losing the first two playoff games to Cleveland, owner George Steinbrenner said he didn't think Torre would be back if the Yankees didn't advance. They lost in four games.

Torre, who took over the team to start the 1996 season, made his decision after traveling fom New York to the team's spring training complex in Tampa, Fla. He was accompanied by Cashman and chief operating officer Lonn Trost.

Tonight is game five of American League Championship Series between the Cleveland Indians and the Boston Red Sox, and if the Indians win it, they go to the World Series. If it can't be the Tigers, I hope it's the Indians.

Update: Be sure to read Peter F.'s analysis in the comments below. Here's a portion:

I don't think Yankee owner George Steinbrenner or GM Brian Cashman had ANY intention of bringing Torre back, that much is clear. I think what transpired--and I have zero proof of this--is that the Yanks said 'Hey, Joe, it's been real, thanks for the championships and post-season appearances, but we're going to fire you. However, we want to let you go honorably and with dignity. We'll make you an offer, you refuse it. Capice?" Joe says capice. Game over. And one of baseball's great manager leaves with the honor and dignity he deserves. And no, I'm not a Yankee fan whatsoever.

He also has a lot of great analysis in his Wizbang Sports post from October 9th, right after the Yanks lost the ALDS to the Indians.


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Comments (20)

No one can predict with acc... (Below threshold)

No one can predict with accuracy what Steinbrenner will do, of course, but I doubt Mattingly will be the choice. If Torre's management was the problem, why pick a member of his management team? So Girardi is probably the logical choice (meaning George will pick someone else).

If Billy Martin were still alive, predicting this would be much easier . . . ;-)

I don't blame Torre a bit for declining the one-year offer, especially after Steinbrenner's public remarks. Teams tend to fire managers for players' inability to win, though.

Odd that Cashman keeps his job . . . wasn't he the one who brought in all these injury-prone pitchers and choke-in-the-clutch hitters?

Yankee haters everywhere re... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

Yankee haters everywhere rejoice!!!

They're done, stick a fork in em.

Meh, I'm shocked that he la... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

Meh, I'm shocked that he lasted 10 years there even with a winning record.

can't buyme LOVEya... (Below threshold)
nogo war:

can't buyme LOVE

ya know...discount the Rockies..

after all..only moonbats(who hate America)

would ever challenge America...

please let Boston Win....

After all...let us crush the Rockie ,,,leftest...agenda

I'm willing to take the tal... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

I'm willing to take the talent the Yankees have and NOT make the World Series for only $4 million.

Someone call Steinbrenner before I change my mind!!

Gee, Kim, don't you read yo... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

Gee, Kim, don't you read your own site's Sports section (cough, cough)?

;-)

OK, that little tease aside, here's my spin on this:

I don't think Yankee owner George Steinbrenner or GM Brian Cashman had ANY intention of bringing Torre back, that much is clear. I think what transpired--and I have zero proof of this--is that the Yanks said 'Hey, Joe, it's been real, thanks for the championships and post-season appearances, but we're going to fire you. However, we want to let you go honorably and with dignity. We'll make you an offer, you refuse it. Capice?" Joe says capice. Game over. And one of baseball's great manager leaves with the honor and dignity he deserves. And no, I'm not a Yankee fan whatsoever.

NOW....

Let the Alex Rodriguez free agent declaration watch begin. Knowing what a publicity hound his mega-agent Scott Boras is, I expect some kind of announcement during the World Series. Boras did that the last time A-Rod was a free agent in 2000 during the Yankees/Mets World Series.

I still think Joe Giraidi is the front runner for skipper. His hiring might be the ONLY reason A-Rod signs his option and stays in NY. Otherwise A-Rod's Anaheim bound.

P.S. Go Cleveland!

Rockies...Just as Re... (Below threshold)
nogo war:

Rockies...
Just as Republicans in the past 7 years...
Give the rich folks a break..let the Yankees' buy their way to a Chamionship.
Just as Hillary Dems and media proclaim
"Done Deal"

The Colorado Rocks...
Huck...Edwards...continue...

"It goes to show you don't ever know
Watch each card you play
and play it slow
Wait until your deal come round
Don't you let that deal go down"

It has been...and will be...the belief...

Rock on....

be careful, torre. latrell ... (Below threshold)
bloodrage bob:

be careful, torre. latrell sprewell rejected a 3 year, $21,000,000 contract offer as "chicken feed".

he hasn't played anywhere since, and they repo'd his yacht a while back. who says there aren't any heartwarming sports stories anymore?

Peter F. I looked ... (Below threshold)

Peter F.

I looked at the Sports section and didn't see anything, but I obviously didn't look back far enough.

Joe to Atlanta?... (Below threshold)

Joe to Atlanta?

No worries at all, Kim. :-)... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

No worries at all, Kim. :-) And thanks for linking my article!

Would Joe make a good prez?... (Below threshold)
reg dunlop:

Would Joe make a good prez?
sox aint dead. yet.

Gmac:"Meh, I'm... (Below threshold)
marc:

Gmac:

"Meh, I'm shocked that he lasted 10 years there even with a winning record."

Indeed, with the Boss's past record of firing managers it's amazing Joe spent ten years at the helm.

bloodrage Bob - be careful, torre. latrell sprewell rejected a 3 year, $21,000,000 contract offer as "chicken feed", he hasn't played anywhere since,

You're dreaming, Joe will settle into a nice retirement, He ain't signing anywhere accept possibly as a TV bobblehead.

Let's be honest here, the c... (Below threshold)
J.R.:

Let's be honest here, the contract would have been worth 8 mil if the yanks won the series in '08. Seems fair to me. As much as I like Torre, this yankee fan thought a change was in order. and I too think Girardi is the guy, but who knows with George.

People keep talking as if G... (Below threshold)
Proud kaffir:

People keep talking as if George is in charge, but his sons are now running the family business. Rumor has it that George is suffering from dementia. The fact that he managed to get away from his attendant long enough to talk on the phone with a reporter doesn't mean he is back in charge.

The reports are also that the younger Steinbrenners are more cost conscious and unwilling to spend as lavishly on players or managers. In the long run, I think continuing the recent youth movement, with a manager who focuses on developing young talent, will benefit the Yankees more.

Proud kaffir ~ HUH? "Stei... (Below threshold)

Proud kaffir ~ HUH? "Steinbrenner . . . suffering from dementia . . ." And they would have noticed this how?

His sons "cost conscious and unwilling to spend as lavishly," is it? When did they take over? Seems Torre just turned down a potential $5-8 million 1-year deal just to manage. In that family, "cost conscious" means something different than it does to the rest of us . . .

;-)

Deeply sad. Joe Torre is a ... (Below threshold)

Deeply sad. Joe Torre is a wonderful guy who always gave it his very best.

It'll be LaRussa.... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

It'll be LaRussa.

It'll be LaRussa.</p... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

It'll be LaRussa.

I definitely entertained that idea. LaRussa would bring pitching guru Dave Duncan with him, and that would be very good for young pitchers like Jaba Chamberlain and Phillip Hughes.

But, there's a drawback. George and his sons are too hands for LaRussa's style of baseball. That, and LaRussa is so low key, low profile, I think the NY media and the city in general would drive him nuts.

I heard a radio newsman say... (Below threshold)

I heard a radio newsman say that Torree was the first manager ever to fire Steinbrenner. My tea came out of my nose.




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