Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Who's Next?
2007-10-19 01:09
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

And so the Joe Torre era is over. There are two immediate responses to this. The first is to honor Torre and his twelve years as the Yankee skipper, the third most successful managerial term in Yankee history:

Joe McCarthy23481460-867.62787
Casey Stengel18511149-696.623107
Joe Torre19421173-767.60564
Miller Huggins17961067-719.59763

McCarthy, Stengel, and Huggins all made the Hall of Fame based on their success in pinstripes. Joe Torre, whose number 6 will join Stengel's 37 in whatever version of Monument Park exists in the new Yankee Stadium, will join them in Cooperstown largely because of the last twelve years.

The second response is to ask what effect Torre's departure will have on the 2008 New York Yankees. That's a much more difficult question to answer, in part because it depends on both whom the Yankees chose to replace Torre as manager, and on how that choice impacts the contract decisions made by Andy Pettitte, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, and Alex Rodriguez. Only those four men know the answer to the latter. As for whom the Yankees might hire to replace Torre, here's a look at a some likely (and far less likely) candidates.

Don Mattingly

Experience: Yankees bench coach 2007, Yankees hitting coach 2004-2006, Yankees captain 1991-1995.

Ever since Don Mattingly was named bench coach last winter it has been assumed that Mattingly would be Joe Torre's successor. Nothing's really changed about that. A recent report in the Star-Ledger that Mattingly didn't want the job was refuted by Mattingly's agent. The only real snag here is that Mattingly has zero managing experience.

Pros: Has Yankee bonafides, spent last three years as a coach on the team, worked closely with the team's hitters, was Yankee captain when Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, and Andy Pettitte made their major league debuts. His calm demeanor, reputation as one of the game's good guys, and experience during the worst of the Steinbrenner years make him likely to pick up where Torre left off as a highly respected calm amidst any possible storm that might develop around the team.

Cons: Based on his short stints managing games when Torre was ejected or suspended this past year, he seems a bit too fond of small-ball tactics and his inexperience could result in overmanaging, at least in the early going. The Mattingly Curse: the 14 years between the Yankees' World Series appearances in 1981 and 1996 coincided exactly with Mattingly's major league career. In his first year as a Yankee coach the team coughed up a 3-0 ALCS lead to the Red Sox and they haven't won a postseason series since.

My take: Donnie needs to go manage in the minors for a few years and come back after Girardi has worn out his welcome.

Joe Girardi

Experience: Marlins manager 2006 (NL Manager of the Year), Yankees bench coach 2005.

Girardi was born to manage and was something of an on-field coach during his stint with the team from 1996-1999. Put in what looked like a no-win situation with the Marlins, who traded away nearly their entire team soon after hiring Girardi as manager, Girardi rallied a young team expected to stumble to triple-digit loses to a .526 second-half performance and a run at the Wild Card.

Pros: Based on his commentary on the YES Network, he's integrated progressive analysis in to his old-school mentality. Despite a reputation to the contrary (based on a game in which he left starter Josh Johnson in the game after an hour-and-twenty-two-minute rain delay and the rash of injuries and poor performances that have befallen the Marlins' young pitching staff), he was actually quite careful with the Marlins' pitchers, pushing only Dontrelle Willis past 200 innings or 120 pitches in a given start (and even Dontrelle never threw more than 125 pitches in a game and finished the season with fewer innings pitched than the year before). Caught Pettitte and Rivera during their best seasons and was a mentor to Jorge Posada as Jorge grew into the catching position at the major league level. As bench coach in 2005, fixed Posada's reluctance to block the plate.

Cons: Fought with the front office in Florida. A taskmaster by reputation. That may have been exactly what that young Marlins' team needed, but it could go over like a lead balloon in a clubhouse of highly-paid veterans, which, despite the influx of youth, is still what the Yankees' are.

My take: Should be the leading candidate and be given strict instructions on how to use Hughes, Chamberlain, and Kennedy in the rotation if given the job (you know, just in case).

Tony La Russa

Experience: 29 consecutive years as major league manager, 4 Manager of the Year awards (most recent: 2002), five pennants, two world championships; White Sox 1979-1986, A's 1986-1995 (1989 Champs), Cardinals 1996-2007 (2006 Champs), third all-time in games and wins as manager.

La Russa succeeded Torre in St. Louis and guided the Cards to six postseason appearances in 12 seasons, that after four postseason appearances (in the pre-Wild Card days) and three World Series appearances in eight full seasons with the A's (not counting the strike year). La Russa, like Torre, is at the end of his most recent contract, but has yet to announce whether or not he intends to return to the Cardinals, a matter complicated by the departure of General Manager Walt Jocketty. That said, he's given indications he'd like to remain in St. Louis.

Pros: His record speaks for itself. As a future Hall-of-Fame manager, he'd have very little problem earning the respect of the veterans, and it would keep up appearances if the Yankees replaced Torre with a manager of similar stature. Would likely bring along pitching coach Dave Duncan, Shelley's dad, who has worked wonders throughout his career with good-for-nothing veterans, even turning Jeff Weaver into a World Series hero in 2006. Is not afraid to skirt convention if he believes it will give him an advantage (for example, he hit his pitchers eighth for the last two months of the 2007 season in order to have more men on base when number-three hitter Albert Pujols came to the plate). Likes the squeeze play.

Cons: Is prickly and has a tendency to over-manage. It's damning that Scott Rolen and he weren't even speaking during the Cardinals' championship run in 2006, but then Rolen was a problem in Philadelphia, too, so maybe that's on Rolen. Has a great deal of blood on his hands in baseball's steroid scandal both from his time with the Bash Brother Oakland A's and as Mark McGwire's manager in St. Louis and also has a recent DUI arrest on his record.

My take: Looks good on paper, but could be too jarring a change for the team as La Russa's ego knows no bounds at this stage. I don't think he's leaving St. Louis.

Larry Bowa

Experience: Phillies manager 2001-2004, Padres manager 1987-1988, Yankees third-base coach 2006-2007.

It's extremely common for teams to replace hot-blooded managers with cooler customers and vice versa. The fiery Bowa would thus be the perfect change of pace after the never-let-them-see-you-sweat Torre. Torre has come under fire for his excessively calm demeanor in the past (a burden he passed on to Willie Randolph, who took similar heat for refusing to panic as the Mets ship sank this September), and that might have been part of why the organization wanted to make a change.

Pros: Beloved by the Yankee players after two years as third-base coach. Helped turn Robinson Cano into one of the best defensive second basemen in baseball. Though his managerial record is unspectacular, he managed the Phillies to winning seasons in three of his four years with the team.

Cons: Though a popular and colorful character that invigorates the team as a coach, could become overbearing given more power. Would rob the Yankees of one heck of a third base coach.

My take: He's not a long-term solution. He's become a Zimmer-like figure to the team as a coach and would make a good adviser to a younger manager. Better to leave well enough alone.

Tony Peña

Experience: Royals manager 2002-2005, Yankees first-base coach 2006-2007.

Peña is sure to be interviewed so that the Yankees will have fulfilled their minority-hiring requirements, but that only exposes the charade of that program, which does as much to patronize minority candidates as it does to force teams to actually consider them.

Pros: In 2003, managed the Royals to their only winning season since the strike-shortened 1994 season and won the Manager of the Year award. Another high-energy coach who is popular among the Yankee players. Has done wonders for Jorge Posada's defense. Playing for a Latin-American manager could hold a special appeal for Posada, Rivera, and Rodriguez as well as for other Latino free agents. Mustache.

Cons: The rest of his time with the Royals consisted of the usual 100-loss-pace futility. Resigned the Royals job amid a small scandal involving an affair he was allegedly having with a neighbor which came to light because he was subpoenaed in her divorce proceedings.

My take: Peña is 12 years Bowa's junior and the team is coalescing around it's Latin American stars. The Kansas City "scandal" was overblown. He should be given more than a token interview.

Dave Miley

Experience: Reds manager 2003-2005, Yankees triple-A manager 2006-2007, minor league manager 1988-1992, 1995-2003.

Pros: My preference for NL Manager of the Year in 2004 when he won 76 games with a terrible Reds team, keeping them in first place as late as June 8 (he didn't win the award). Has managed several of the team's young stars on their way up to the majors. Could be joined by Scranton pitching coach Dave Eiland, who has shepherded the team's exciting young arms through the minor leagues having coached in Trenton in 2005 and 2006 and in short-season A-ball the two years before that. Worked with hitting coach Kevin Long in Columbus in 2006. Has a career .566 winning percentage in 16 seasons in the minors, with only two losing seasons on his minor league record. Managed Scranton to a .587 record in 2007.

Cons: The Reds stunk in the second half of 2004 and in 2005 and Miley was fired after just 70 games in the latter season. Scranton lost in the first round of the playoffs this year.

My take: Miley is almost a year younger than Mattingly and has managed 2,530 more games. I'm just sayin' . . .

Bob Brenley

Experience: Diamondbacks manager 2001-2004, 2001 World Championship

The Boss has a habit of going after players who have beaten his team. I still believe that's why the Yankees signed 2001 Diamondback Tony Womack three years ago. So why not Womack's manager? Brenley's only 54 and is still highly visible as a color man for TBS this postseason. Then again, he's perhaps best remembered for throwing Byun-Hyung Kim to the wolves in the 2001 World Series, a series his team won largely despite Brenley.

Pros: Two postseason appearances and one World Championship in four years as a major league manager. Mustache.

Cons: It's telling that he's not landed somewhere else since being fired half-way through the 2004 season.

My take: I just can't imagine this one happening.

Jerry Narron

Experience: Reds manager 2005-2007, Rangers manager 2001-2002.

Narron's only on this list because he's an out-of-work major league manager with a Yankee connection. It was Narron who replaced Thurman Munson behind the plate after the Yankee captain's death in 1979. Narron's managerial track record is awful. Only two of his five seasons lasted all 162 games and every year that he returned with the same team, that team did worse than the previous year.

My take: No chance.

Joel Skinner

Experience: Interim Indians manager for 75 games in 2002, minor league manager 1995-2000, current Indians' third-base coach.

I mention Skinner both because he was seriously considered for the Indians job prior to Eric Wedge's hiring. He also has a Yankee connection as he was the Yankee backup catcher from 1986-1988.

Pros: A well-respected part of the Indians organization which is currently the go-to source for front office management, so why not on-field management as well? Has a .574 career winning percentage as a minor league manager (all in the Indians' organization). Made the playoffs in five of his six seasons. Won minor league manager of the year awards in 1998 and 2000.

Cons: Whatever reason the Indians had to pass over him in favor of Wedge.

My take: Skinner seems unlikely to leave the Indians organization, where he finished his major league career from 1989-1991. That said, here's another guy who's essentially Mattingly's age (he's about a month older) and has 856 more games of managerial experience.

Trey Hillman

Experience: Nippon Ham Fighters manager 2003-2007, Yankee minor league manager 1990-2001, Rangers director of player development 2002, Indians scout 1988.

Pros: His Fighters won the Japanese championship in 2006 and just beat Bobby Valentine's Marines for this year's Pacific League Championship. A highly-regarded tactical manager, he's frequently considered for major league positions, but as of yet has not been hired by an MLB team. Yet another guy Mattingly's age with a ton of managerial experience who's looking for his first major league job.

Cons: Has been on the other side of the world for the last five seasons.

My take: Hillman's already being considered for the Royals' vacancy, but he was up for the Rangers and A's jobs last year and got neither. He's a long shot for sure, but the Yankee connection is there and could matter to Jeter, Posada, Pettitte, and Rivera, all of whom came up through the system while Hillman was a part of it.

Torey Lovullo

Experience: minor league manager 2004-present

Pros: Another product of the Indians organization (he's currently their triple-A manager) and a former Yankee (22 games at third base in 1991). Won Manager of the Year awards in A-ball in 2004 and double-A in 2005. A popular candidate who has yet to land his first major league job, but has been managing in triple-A for the last two years.

Cons: Uhm, small fish in a big pond? That's about all I've got.

My take: A solid candidate (one more than four year's younger than Mattingly), but so far down the Yankees' list that he might as well not even be on it.

Bucky Dent

Experience: Yankee manager for 89 games in 1989 and 1990, Yankee minor league manager 1985-1989, 2003-2005, Royals triple-A manager 2002, Reds bench coach under Narron 2006-2007, Rangers coach 1995-2001, Cardinals third-base coach under Torre 1991-1994.

Though some of us still cringe at the horrors of Bucky's first stint as Yankee manager (Stump Merrill replaced him mid-1990), he was briefly the man assumed to be Torre's successor after the disastrous 2004 playoffs.

Pros: Couldn't possibly be as bad as the '89 and '90 Yankees made him look. Has a ton of experience including three recent seasons with the Clippers (2003-2005). His mere presence would taunt Boston fans.

Cons: Playing second banana to Jerry Narron and getting canned along with him rather than promoted as an interim manager in the wake of his firing doesn't look s'good. He's been around a long time and it's been 17 years since his last (and only) stint as a major league manager.

My take: His second shot at becoming the Yankee manager passed in 2004.

Lee Mazzilli

Experience: Orioles manager 2004-2005, Yankee bench coach 2006, Yankee first-base coach 2000-2003.

Pros: Worked under Torre, has established relationship with the team and most of the players. Got a raw deal in Baltimore as the Rafael Palmeiro drug scandal clouded the improvements the team was making on the field under Maz, who remains the most successful Orioles skipper of the decade (faint praise that may be).

Con: Maz was dumped to make room for Mattingly on the bench this year.

My Take: The Con says it all.

Orel Hershiser

Experience: Rangers pitching coach 2002-2005, four months in the Rangers front office in 2006.

Pros: He's brilliant, organized, detailed, and you know he's stat friendly. Plus, if he's back in the dugout I'll never have to watch Baseball Tonight again.

Cons: He's like a nerdier Mattingly. No managerial experience, but well respected, even-keeled, and extremely dedicated.

My take: Please, please, please offer him the pitching coach job.

Buck Showalter

Experience: Yankee manager 1992-1995, Diamondbacks manager 1998-2000, Rangers manager 2003-2006, Yankees minor league manager 1985-1989, Yankee coach 1990-1991, current senior advisor to baseball operations for the Indians.

Pros: Oversaw the emergence of the last Yankee dynasty. Generally considered an excellent manager. Extremely dedicated. Every team he managed improved by a dozen games or more in his second year at the helm.

Cons: Too dedicated and detail oriented, has a tendency to burn out his teams and himself. Had a bad relationship with Alex Rodriguez in Texas. Replacing Torre with the man who proceeded him, even if it's 12 years later, is unlikely to sit well with the Steinbrenners.

My take: I'd be shocked. Shocked.

Bobby Valentine

Experience: Mets manager 1996-2002, Rangers manager 1985-1992, Chiba Lotte Marines manager 1995, 2003-present.

Pros: Won NL pennant in 2000, led the Marines to the Japanese championship in 2005.

Cons: The new Billy Martin, only with the alcoholic neurosis inverted into an almost uncontrollable ego. Also in 13 full seasons as a major league manager never once won a division.

My take: Likely more trouble than he's worth. He's a sensation in Japan, which is where he'll stay.

Davey Johnson

Experience: Mets manager 1984-1990, 1986 World Champions, Reds manager 1993-1995, Orioles manager 1996-1997, 1997 AL Manager of the Year, Dodgers manager 1999-2000.

Johnson hasn't managed in seven years and will be 65 in January, but I list him here because he did nothing but win as a manager (11 winning seasons in his 12 full seasons as a major league skipper and a career .564 winning percentage), and he's younger than Whitey Herzog and Earl Weaver, my other pipe dream/time machine dream picks. That said, Johnson managed Team USA in the 2005 Baseball World Cup, was the bench coach for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic last year, is working with Team USA with an eye toward the 2008 Olympics, and took an advisory position with the Nationals last year, so there's reason to think he might come back to the game.

Pros: Never finished worse than second with the Mets or Orioles, finished first in his only two full seasons with the Reds (though that includes the strike year), was the only man other than Terry Francona this year to win the AL East during Torre's tenure with the Yankees. Improved the Dodgers by nine games in his second season in L.A. Stat-friendly.

Cons: The Mets imploded on his watch as he turned a blind eye to the off-field problems of his young stars. He pitched Dwight Gooden's arm off, having him throw 276 2/3 innings at age 20 and then 250 more the next year. The Yankee job is probably the worst position Johnson could take after being out of the game for seven years, though the manager of the 1986 Mets might still get some slack in this town.

My take: During the Yankees' conference call to announce Joe Torre's departure yesterday, Brian Cashman said that some of the men on his list of candidates for the open managers job might surprise us. Johnson wouldn't surprise me quite as much as Showalter, but it would be close.

So that's my list. Got any other ideas while we all wait for them to announce Mattingly as the new skipper?

Comments (311)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-10-19 03:56:22
1.   unmoderated
What's Butch Wyneger up to these days?
2007-10-19 04:05:44
2.   joejoejoe
My prediction:
Manager Don Mattingly
Bench coach Larry Bowa
3rd base coach Tony Pena
1st base coach Bernie Williams
Pitching coach Orel Hershiser (sounds good to me)
Old-timers day starter Ron Guidry (takes mound to a standing O)

Worst case:
Manager Tony LaRussa (I see a Larry Brown Knicks-like implosion)

Best mustache:
Bobby Valentine

2007-10-19 04:13:36
3.   Yu-Hsing Chen
yes, Orel Hershiser as a PC sounds awsome. and Dave Eliland replace Joe Kerrigan as the bullpen coach.

I think your point on Giradi is good enough, that as long as they keep an eye on his handling of the kids he should be fine. and like you said, teams usually replace cool manager with more fiery onces, Bowa may be a little over the top (and old ) for that, but Giradi would be just fine.

2007-10-19 04:21:54
4.   monkeypants
2 I like your style, but Bernie will never coach.
2007-10-19 04:44:50
5.   randym77
I wouldn't hold what happened with the Reds against Bucky Dent. Dent was upset at being passed over, but it turns out that the Reds had Dusty Baker in their sights all along. Pete Mackanin was just a placeholder, and I think it probably speaks well for Dent that they didn't give him the job. They wanted to keep him. He didn't see it that way, though.

I definitely don't want Narron. You think Torre's bullpen management is bad. Narron makes him look like a genius.

But speaking of Narron..."Haunted Baseball" has a story that took place when Narron was a young catcher for the Yankees. He shared a house with another player, Ron Davis. Rookies made only $19,000 a year back then, and it didn't go very far in the NY area. So they stayed in this really old, dilapidated - and haunted - house in NJ. Some really creepy things happened, like windows opening by themselves. They later found out that a family of five had been killed there.

2007-10-19 05:03:05
6.   Sliced Bread
Okay, we're turning the page on Joe? Let's go.

Excellent write up, Cliff, but:

- the Mattingly Curse doesn't exist so why bring it up?

- Girardi's "cons" are pros on my scorecard.

- The only other one worth talking about is Showalter in my opinion.

Donnie and Girardi are the best options. We don't know who's the better man for the next 3 years.

Donnie would be my first choice if the veterans are returning. He's the most Torre'esque of the bunch, and why not keep the old guard happy as the team gets younger and moves across the street?

If the vets are gone and the roster goes into flux, I see Girardi as the more intriguing option.

Here's hoping the Yankee braintrust handles the next phase better than they did the Torre situation.

2007-10-19 05:03:22
7.   yankz
Mustache is a pro?!
2007-10-19 05:06:43
8.   yankz
Via "G Love" on LoHud, the worst Star Wars analogy I've ever heard:

"For you Star Wars fans, Big Stein was Vader. Levine is Palpatine. I think Cashman went from being Admiral Ackbar to Jar Jar Binks. A precipitous fall, if I've ever seen one."

2007-10-19 05:31:42
9.   joejoejoe
8 Yousa might'n be sayin dat.
2007-10-19 06:01:09
10.   Dimelo
Did you guys see NoMaas today?
2007-10-19 06:27:24
11.   williamnyy23
The media in New York and around baseball loved Joe Torre. Why wouldn't they? He was an honest and friendly man. He could be both stoic and emotional, not to mention very entertaining. I am sure Joe was either a (grand)father figure or friend to many media members. As a result, I wouldn't expect objectivity on this issue. Except for Joel Sherman (whose take I agree with), the media has already started potraying Joe as a martyr. While I think he should be honored for his service, painting him as a victim is over the top. Sure, one can argue that Joe deserved a better offer, but that doesn't mean the Yankees were the evil ogres many in the media are making them out to be. Some balance is needed here.

Ultimately, the future of the 2008 Yankees will be determined more by who is on the team as opposed to who is managing it. If not this year, a transition from Torre was going to have to come sooner or later. Ultimately, the move to a new manager will have a relatively smaller impact on the future than many are suggesting, so much of the bluster today will look like much ado about nothing.

As for the next manager, I think Cashman needs to hold an extensive screening process. The Yankees need to find their next manager for the long-term, not just for next season.

2007-10-19 06:34:59
12.   mehmattski
Hire Cowher! Hire Marty Schottenheimer! Trade Pennington!

Oh, sorry, wrong NY Sports coaching controversy.

I've said it before, I'll say it again: IF mustache, THEN Mattingly; ELSE Girardi.

But, ya know, in the long run, as long as he's able to write a lineup and walk to the mound to make pitching changes, the Yankees are going to win 90 games. Bringing back A-Rod and Posada and Pettitte and Mo mean about 1000 times more to the team than who's sitting on the bench.

2007-10-19 06:36:35
13.   Sliced Bread
The more I think about Girardi and his problems with the Marlins ownership, the more I can see him butting heads with the "performance based" accounting firm of Levine & Trost, and the newly annointed Bobblehead Bros.

God help Donnie Baseball with that crew.

2007-10-19 06:57:16
14.   unpopster
I understand the Hershiser love, but there's a certain guy named Leo Mazzone available now that might just be the perfect pitching coach for guys like Phil Hughes, Joba, and Kennedy.

My perfect scenario would be Bowa as manager, Mattingly as bench coach (and heir apparent to Bowa in 2 years), Mazzone as pitching coach, Eiland as bullpen coach, Sojo as 3rd base coach, and Pena as 1st base coach.

2007-10-19 06:58:51
15.   dianagramr
Any sighting of Chris Chambliss lately?
2007-10-19 07:05:31
16.   Sliced Bread
I was thinking the same thing about Chambliss. Hopefully, he declines the opportunity to meet the Bobblehead Bros. and their high-powered accountants.
2007-10-19 07:11:24
17.   williamnyy23
For perspective, the following are two passages from George Vecesy's column in the NYT on November 3, 1995.

THE real question is not whether Joe Torre is the best manager for the Yankees. If that question were relevant, why, then, Buck Showalter would still be managing the Yankees, and loyal fans would not be wondering if they really want to support George's habit any longer.

Showalter did a terrific job. Knows the organization. Has the respect of the players. But the owner aced him out. The owner gets everybody, sooner or later. The real question is, what's a nice fellow like Torre doing in a place like this? The theory here is that he is saving some more tender heart from the greasy agony of working for George Steinbrenner.

Joe Torre is a manager. He's had his life. He was a very good player, handled three positions, hit .297 despite terminal slowness (his vanity license plate could have been 6-4-3), and then all three of his former clubs hired him as manager, which says something.

Torre's a pro. He did the best he could with the Mets, won a division title with Atlanta, and then inherited St. Louis when the players and the money and the thrill was wearing off.


The real question is, who's next in this Yankee-manager business? My own sense of the coming Yankee chronology is: Willie Randolph, Don Mattingly, Chris Chambliss, Newt Gingrich (although, come to think of it, has anybody ever seen George and Newt in the same place at the same time?), Darryl Strawberry, Arthur Richman, Rick Down (George often does penance for ugly words and deeds), Art Fowler, David Letterman, Dwight Gooden, Pee-wee Herman, Nathaniel Showalter (the owner does admire Buck's "nice little family"), Suzyn Waldman, Mookie Wilson, Andrew Giuliani and Lenny Dykstra. (George has this terrible case of Met envy.)

That takes us to about 1998. I see Bill Bradley managing the Jersey Yankees. Instead of hearing old Sinatra croaking "New York, New York," we hear Springsteen's "Glory Days." George doesn't get the irony. By then, Joe Torre's managing somewhere else. If Steinbrenner can go on and on, why not Torre?

2007-10-19 07:12:21
18.   ChrisS
11 , 12

Agreed. It's not like the offer was a full blown pay cut and he wouldn't still be the highest paid manager in the game.

I think it's time to try someone that may be bristly with the media, but can't be out-managed by a wet paper bag.

2007-10-19 07:16:56
19.   ChrisS
Also, with George fading out of the picture more and more, is being able to handle "The Boss" that big of an issue anymore? Granted, dealing with the Yankees' ownership and FO will never be easy, but still. It ain't the 80s.
2007-10-19 07:18:57
20.   williamnyy23
I have to ammend by criticism of the NY media. Suprisingly, both Kepener and Chass had very balanced pieces in the NY Times.
2007-10-19 07:21:39
21.   williamnyy23
Scratch Hillman off the list...he is expected to take the K.C. job today, according to ESPN. No doubt Torre's decision has prompted the Royals to move swiftly.
2007-10-19 07:25:45
22.   rbj
Nice analysis Cliff.
I would like to have a manager with experience, but if not that, then have a very experienced bench coach. Not sure who I favor right now.
2007-10-19 07:28:10
23.   The Mick 536
Has to be Donnie Baseball. Has Jankee past. Disciplined. Good guy. Give him a bench coach a la Zimmer. He'll learn the managing game. The guys will play for him. And next year, if they get a first baseman, he'll teach him how to play like Pena taught Sada and Bowa taught Robie.

La Russa is a stiff. How could he not have known guys were juicing?

Like the ruminations, Cliff.

2007-10-19 07:31:44
24.   Raf
11 They may not be ogres, but with the way they're coming off, it's not looking too good. Hopefully, this isn't going to be an indication of the way they're going to start doing things. I don't mind the change (I lived through the managerial merry go round of the 80's) so much as the way it was handled.

15 If he hasn't gotten a shot by now, I fear he never will.

18 Can't say that a team that has played near and above .600 ball has a manager with tactical issues. The right moves have blown up, the wrong moves have worked. That's the nature of the game.

2007-10-19 07:33:48
25.   pistolpete
Heh, sad state of affairs and the payroll when all we're talking about is the potential coaching staff next year.

I've never heard this particular take on the free agent situation, but is it possible that guys like Posada and Rivera need to 'grow up' a little bit in terms of their new contracts?

Understandable that they're being loyal to basically their 'career' manager, but do they realize that this isn't how most other teams function nowadays?

They could have had to endure what Mattingly did in terms of managerial changes, which IMO made his career that much more tragic.

I understand he's under no obligation to do so, but I would hope Joe might reach out to these guys and advise them against destroying a great legacy with the Yankees because of his own situation.

Then again, the way the Bernie thing went and now this, I wouldn't blame Mo, Po, Andy or Alex if they turned their back on the whole franchise.

2007-10-19 07:38:13
26.   Raf
23 He knew, everyone knew. Remember him going after a reporter when he found a bottle of Andro in McGwire's locker?
2007-10-19 07:39:54
27.   williamnyy23
24 I don't think you can expect the media to look at this objectively, although suprisingly, more than a few articles have managed to be even-handed. Regardless, I am not concerned about how this move is perceived. More importantly, I think it was a prudent offer considering the current state of the ball club. While it may turn out to be a PR nightmare, I think it represents sound decision making, which ultimately is more important.
2007-10-19 07:40:09
28.   Mike T
I vote for Girardi.
2007-10-19 07:45:29
29.   Zack
I'd vote for Girardi I guess. It will be Mattingly, b/c I just don't see him sticking around if someone else is managing, and I doubt he would agree to coach in the minors. Hillmen would be interesting, but I don't think its the type of guy/move the Yanks would make. And I don't think he'd be given a fair chance by the fans or media. If there is one thing I have learned between Torre and the Eric Mangini of the Jets/Herm Edwards, is that the media in New York LOVES the coaches who will sit down and be their best friend, and if anything gets in the way of that, they act like spoiled 12 year olds who didn't get what they wanted. They come up with stories just to make the coach look bad and do everything they can to run him out of town.

The media in NY, for the most part, LOVED JT. Now, they are pissed/scared. Hillmen would be meat for the grinder, no? Donnie, however, would be a story.

In other news, is anyone else really annoyed by the ALCS schedule and all the offdays? Talk about killing any sense of building tension or drama, these off days are killing me. And it makes it really easy for the manager to use certain guys a LOT, like Raf B...

2007-10-19 07:48:23
30.   pistolpete
29 Right. The day off on Wednesday might have been a momentum killer for the Indians, while today could be one for the Sox.

Go Tribe go.

2007-10-19 07:53:34
31.   yankz
Girardi for me I guess, though I don't really know. I hope Mattingly would stay on in some capacity.
2007-10-19 07:54:43
32.   Bronxer
No Maas for nomaas? What's up with that?
2007-10-19 07:55:27
33.   Raf
27 They ran/run the risk of losing Posada, Rivera & Pettitte. They're making a change after what some consider his most challenging year of managing. How is that sound decision making?

Granted, I'm not the biggest Torre fan, but this move reeks of scapegoating.

2007-10-19 07:57:04
34.   Raf
29 I am... All those offdays would've helped back in 2004. Alas, water under the bridge
2007-10-19 08:00:46
35.   williamnyy23
33 I don't think you make decisions based on "what some consider". Considering Torre's age, the changing direction of the team, his less then stellar post season managing and Cashman also having 1 year left on his deal, I think a short-term commitment to Torre was justified. Other than loyalty to classy guy, I don't see a reason for making a long-term commitment.
2007-10-19 08:06:06
36.   Shaun P
0 Cliff, Girardi did more to the Marlins' pitchers than push Dontrelle (and the infamous Josh Johnson game). I posted this sometime in your "Order of Operations" post from 10 days ago:

"The Baseball Cube says Olsen threw 100.7 innings in 2005: 80.3 for AA, 20.3 for the Marlins. says the same.

That would mean, as I said in #44 that Olsen went from 100.7 innings in 2005 to over 180 innings in 2006 (176 in Florida, 6 in AAA) = increase of 80 innings. So Girardi completely ignored the 'rule of 30'.

And, Sanchez pitched 85.7 innings at AA in 2006, and then 114.3 innings for Florida = 200 innings total. His previous high was in 2005, with 136 innings total (78.7 in A, 57.3 in AA) = increase of 64 innings. Again, Girardi completely ignored the 'rule of 30'."

This worries me.

IF Girardi is given a strict set of rules AND told he BETTER stick to them (or else), I think I would be OK - still a little queasy, but OK.

I would feel more comfortable knowing Eiland was around, either in the bullpen or the dugout. I think he gets "it".

I never thought of Hershiser as pitching coach, but that's a great idea. Anyone have data on how he did with the Rangers?

2007-10-19 08:08:55
37.   tommyl
Great writeup Cliff (as usual)! Thanks.

Even though I wanted Joe gone, with all the negative media coverage I was feeling a bit down this morning. Trust Cliff to cheer me up with a look at how the team might actually improve. I still vote Girardi, and I'd think the vets would respect him too. Otherwise it would make MoPo look bad if they don't want to play for him.

p.s. I still think Levine is slimy.

2007-10-19 08:12:46
38.   ChrisS
24 I don't think that managing mistakes are all that glaring over the course of 162 games, especially with teams that have a talent level like the Yankees. I think having a couple of solid starters and a hitter with an OPS+ over 100 in eight out of nine positions in the lineup will average out to a lot of wins. April/May were disasters because of injuries to the starting staff.

However, Torre's in-game mistakes are most obvious in a short series where having the right match-ups, or bunting, or hitting away in the right situations can win or lose a game. And you can only lose 3 games in a series before you go home for the winter.

2007-10-19 08:21:14
39.   standuptriple
I've decided I'm growing a mustache until this gets settled. I suggest you all do the same.
2007-10-19 08:25:24
40.   RIYank
38 I think I understand Raf's point (and I agree), and I don't follow your response.
How could in-game mistakes be more obvious in the post-season than in the regular season? They are exactly as likely to lose games in either case, right?

I doubt that game management makes more than two games difference over the course of a season, unless the manager is exceptionally bad (or exceptionally good). I suspect, though it's hard to argue for I admit, that the clubhouse stuff is much more important for a team like the Yankees. Finally, I doubt very much that whoever replaces Torre will be a much better game manager than he is.

2007-10-19 08:26:14
41.   Raf
35 I don't think Torre's age and the direction of the team is relevant. Even with the kids being worked in, it's still a veteran team.

Regarding his postseason managing (assuming 2001-2007), the right moves have blown up, the wrong moves have worked. Same happened during the WC run from 1996-2000.

Short term commitment is fine, but if they really wanted him back, they would've made a better offer, or they'd still be negotiating. (is this approaching dead horse territory?)

2007-10-19 08:36:50
42.   standuptriple
Put me in the Girardi camp. I'm not so worried about him rubbing people the wrong way in the FO. It seemed like FLA had no direction and so he installed his own brand. Then they didn't like it so much (meddling owners, who needs 'em).
2007-10-19 08:40:51
43.   ms october
39 Thankfully I am not one of those women that can join in.

41 It is sort of a weird team in terms of the make-up. "Dynasty" holdovers (hopefully that will include more than Jeter. High priced veterans (ARod?; Abreu?; Damon; Matsui; Giambi - I wish I could put a ? by Giambi). Players who have done something and could improve further(Wang; Cano; Cabrera). Lots of young pitching that look very promising but have not pitched full seasons in the majors yet (Joba; Hughes; Kennedy).
And who knows what in the bullpen.
Who really is the right person to manage this team?

2007-10-19 08:46:52
44.   monkeypants
40 I think what was mean was that manager's tactical decision have a greater chance to do greater harm in the post season. You're right, over the course of the long hall, a couple of games difference (two or three "Torre losses" or whatever) don't amount to much, especially when a team wins 95 games. But in the post season, even one such loss (or the perception that the manager cost one win) is often devatating to the team's chances of advancing.

42 The Yankees managed to replace Huggins, McCarthey, Stendel and Showalter (for that matter), and make it to the playoffs three times out of the four cases I've cited; and in all four cases they won the WS withing three years.

Who knows, maybe the analogy should be Stengel: Houk::Torre: ??

2007-10-19 08:53:25
45.   Raf
38 That's the thing, they've had the right match ups. Like I said before, the right moves blew up, the wrong moves worked out. Who thought David Weathers & Graeme Lloyd would've come up big in '96? Who would've thought Wang would get shelled this past postseason? Who would've thought Pettitte would get shelled in '01 with the Yanks leading the series 3-2? That Rivera would have an ineffective inning in '01? So on and so forth.
2007-10-19 08:54:07
46.   JL25and3
27 , 35 That was an offer that was designed to be refused. Yes, they offered him a huge salary, but it was still a cut. Worse, I think, was the "sing for your supper" approach.

Perhaps performance-based bonuses for managers have their place, but this isn't it. After 12 years, they knew exactly what Joe is as a manager. If they thought they could get a better manager, or wanted to save money, or thought he was too old, or whatever - then don't hire him. Either he's the best manager for the team or he isn't, but in any case he shouldn't have to prove himself.

Maybe Joe would have been willing to negotiate a lower salary, or accept a short-term deal or both; maybe not. But the way this deal was presented, they knew it would be unacceptable.

2007-10-19 08:55:08
47.   tommyl
Ok, what's with these reporters waxing nostalgic about how great George Steinbrenner used to be? How dignified? Sure, he'd make decisions and take responsibility, but c'mon, Dave Winfield wasn't exactly treated with dignity. Reggie's under the table "out clause"? Hiring Torre and then two days later begging Buck to come back? There are some aspects of the old George I miss, but lets not kid ourselves that he was a friendly patriarch steering the ship in the right direction. Hell, the only reason the 96-00 dynasty even exists is because of his banishment.
2007-10-19 08:58:38
48.   ChrisS
40 to 44 exactly. Having a couple of bad results from poor managing in tight games here and there over the course of 162 games isn't going to be a disaster. Losing a game or two in short series because of, say, mismanaging the bullpen means the golf season starts early.

A team can only lose 4 times in a post-season series and giving away one loss because of something that's moderately controllable can swing a series. Especially when the two teams are close to equal in talent.

2007-10-19 09:01:07
49.   yankz
Anybody else think Rubenstein should have just released a statement saying, "The organization from top to bottom is in transition. We're trying to get younger and adapt to the changing nature of the game. We thank Joe Torre for all he has done for us. He is a true legend and a truer Yankee, for life. However, we have failed to accomplish our goal for seven years now, and we feel changes are necessary. Once again, we thank Torre for the past twelve years."

AFTER telling Joe they weren't going to extend him.

2007-10-19 09:01:42
50.   tommyl
49 Yes
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-10-19 09:02:41
51.   ChrisS
As far the next manager, I like Girardi, Hillman, Miley or LaRussa, in roughly that order. I'm hesitant about hiring a name (Mattingly) and would rather have someone with experience.

All in all, I still think that a manager can do more to lose a game than win one, but in the end, the differences between managers aren't all that great. Having Torre or Mattingly manage the team isn't as big a deal as not having Rivera or A-Rod back.

2007-10-19 09:13:49
52.   RIYank
48 True -- I think that just amounts to the fact that post-season games are much more important, right? So, I agree, a post-season loss due to a bad decision is much more significant.
But, if you agree with me that the difference between two managers is apt to be only a couple of games out of 162, you should think (like I do) that a manager will make only a very tiny difference to post-season win expectation (though you're right that having two teams very closely matched in talent will increase the manager's effect).

I think Raf is right, along these lines, to point out how often the 'right' decision goes wrong and the 'wrong' decision turns out better. Smart decisions only increase your chances, which means they'll turn out better than dumb decisions more often -- not always. For instance, bunting in the fourth inning is probably not smart, but that's because most of the time you'll score more by swinging away. Uh, what's my point here? Oh yeah. My point is that ten bad decisions in ten losses doesn't mean that the decisions cost you ten games. Good decisions would still have lost most of those games. Maybe all of them.

2007-10-19 09:18:58
53.   williamnyy23
41 I am not sure how age is irrelevant. It does stand to reason that as Torre approaches 70, his ability to maintain the physical grind of managing a baseball team may lessen. The direction of the team is also relevant. If Torre can't be there for the long haul, then it is prudent to want another manager guiding this next round of a young nucleus.

I guess the validity of the offer is open to debate, but absent issues of pride, I don't see why Torre couldn't accept a one-year deal.

2007-10-19 09:19:56
54.   JL25and3
38 This time in particular, I don't think there's any way to pin the playoff loss on Torre. I actually think that he was right to start Wang in game 1, and right to leave Joba in for another inning in game 3; at the least, those things are arguable.

I do agree that his bullpen use in game 1 was way off, and that he should have pinch-hit for Minky earlier than he did. Of course, I also give him more credit than some do for knowing a little something, so I'd be curious to hear his reasoning. Until then, they look like bad moves to me.

Still, there's no way to argue that those moves were magnified, or really made any difference, in this series.

And finally, I repeat: if they didn't like the way he managed in the postseason, then they should just have let him go.

2007-10-19 09:25:45
55.   williamnyy23
46 I have a problem with deeming the proposal "unacceptable". A deal calling for Torre to denounce his faith and face a firing squad if he didn't win the World Series is unacceptable. Now, you can argue Torre deserved a better deal, but calling it unacceptable just doesn't hold weight. No matter what the Yankees hoped Torre would decide, they did take the risk of lobbing the ball back in his court.
2007-10-19 09:26:42
56.   monkeypants
52 "you should think (like I do) that a manager will make only a very tiny difference to post-season win expectation (though you're right that having two teams very closely matched in talent will increase the manager's effect)."

Not necessarily, or at least as you state it. Wins are discrete units--they exist only in wholes, not in fractions. So, over the course of a long season, managerial decision X may work out right Y times and wrong Z times, yielding a correspsonding number of wins and losses. Thus, on average, the decision may contribute relatively little to any given game. But again, keep in mind that the decision, which may come up only a few times in a season, is being washed out by the full schedule.

In the post season, the same decision may come up--and indeed, given the nature of postseason play, where short term tactics tend to govern decisions more than longterm strategies, imprtant tactical decisions are more likley to present themselves--there is a much greater chance that decision X contributes directly to a win or a loss.

2007-10-19 09:28:57
57.   williamnyy23
49 That might have been a better solution, but isn't it also possible that the Yankees did think he was the best choice for 2008, but not beyond? Considering all the player transition going on, perhaps the Yankees didn't want to look for a new manager, but also felt they shouldn't have to reward Torre with a long-term deal?
2007-10-19 09:31:56
58.   monkeypants
57 Right--the analysis still seems to center on the Boss's statement that Torre would be fired if they did not advance, and so assumes that the overriding criterion was dissatisfaction with the postseason. The more I think about it, the more I think that the decision-making process was more complex, and the contract offer reflects that.

Then again, with no real evidence either way, all arguments on the subject basically resolve to circular.

2007-10-19 09:42:15
59.   yankz
57 Maybe, but it's tough for me to see it that way (that they wanted him back for a year). Though, I can see the other side as well. My post in 49 depends on the Yankees not really wanting him back. If that's the case, I wish they'd rather just be up front instead of slimy.
2007-10-19 09:43:05
60.   williamnyy23
Assuming making the playoffs is all that counts and winning series is more random luck, then I think Bobby Cox is a comparable case to look at:

Bobby Cox top salary has been $3mn (less than half of what Torre made in 2007 and 40% less than the "pay cut" he was offered). What's more, in 2004 (while in the midst of his consecutive division run), Cox signed a 1-year deal with a club option. In 2006, he signed another two-year deal. In 2007, he signed a one-year extension.

It seems as if Cox and Braves have been going year to year for quite some time. So, why not Torre as well?

2007-10-19 09:45:31
61.   yankz
60 Not arguing here, just wondering- was Cox's salary cut after the string of division titles ended?
2007-10-19 09:46:57
62.   JL25and3
55 I thought I was clear; they knew it would be unacceptable to Torre. It wasn't much of a risk.
2007-10-19 09:51:50
63.   RIYank

"In the post season, the same decision may come up--and indeed, given the nature of postseason play, where short term tactics tend to govern decisions more than longterm strategies, imprtant tactical decisions are more likley to present themselves--there is a much greater chance that decision X contributes directly to a win or a loss."

I don't see why this should be true. Why are tactical decisions more likely in the post-season? Also, what is the difference between short-term tactics and long-term strategy?

I don't believe tactics have a greater chance of contributing to a win (or loss) in the post-season. If they do, then I pretty much agree with the rest of what you're saying.

2007-10-19 09:55:22
64.   Sliced Bread
60 apples oranges.
The Yanks are not the Braves, and NY is not Atlanta (see cost of living).

And again, it wasn't about the money, it was about the principle.

2007-10-19 09:57:56
65.   Sliced Bread
apples : peaches
2007-10-19 10:00:14
66.   williamnyy23
59 If they did want him for one-year, which I think is very reasonable, why was the offer slimy?
2007-10-19 10:00:38
67.   RIYank
65 Lunch!
Apples. Peaches. Sliced Bread. Butter.
2007-10-19 10:01:14
68.   yankz
66 That's the point; it's slimy if they didn't actually want him and made him an offer they knew he wouldn't take.
2007-10-19 10:02:10
69.   Sliced Bread
67 Sliced Bread toast. exhausted. hungry
2007-10-19 10:03:08
70.   williamnyy23
68 I realize that...but what if they did want him for 1 year? That's the possibility that everyone is dismissing.
2007-10-19 10:03:59
71.   Raf
53 For the record, I have no issue with offering Torre a 1-year contract. I do have issue with the way it was handled. I agree with 46 that it seems they made a token offer.

59 If they wanted him back, they would've made a better offer. Or they'd still be negotiating.

2007-10-19 10:04:34
72.   yankz
70 We're going in circles. IF they did actually want him, then the debate is was the contract justified? And I'm not getting into that again.

IF they didn't want him, they should have just said something similar to 49 , IMO.

2007-10-19 10:05:06
73.   yankz
71 I agree; I don't think they wanted him back.
2007-10-19 10:06:24
74.   williamnyy23
61 It wasn't cut, but then again, his raises were always modest. I think if you ask for a big raise when to succeed, then yo have to accept a cut when you fail.

Also, it's worth noting, Torre's current contract already has $1mn bonus for winning the World Series, so the concept of incentives apparently isn't unacceptable to him.

2007-10-19 10:07:42
75.   williamnyy23
62 It was clear...I just don't see why it should be unacceptable. Now, anyone can decide what is acceptable to them, but that doesn't make it rational. What if Torre thought $10mn was unacceptable? Would that make such an offer an insult?
2007-10-19 10:08:04
76.   Levy2020
"Brian Cashman said that some of the men on his list of candidates for the open managers job might surprise us."

Armando Benitez!?

2007-10-19 10:08:58
77.   Shaun P
69 Sliced, if you're hungry, I believe the Banter cafe is having a special on dead horse meat. They're swimming in the stuff.

74 You almost drew me back in with your comment about failing, but I am not going to do it.

Any news on Trey Hillman? My understanding was the Braves' 3B coach was the front-runner for the KC job. Is Hillman from the KC area?

2007-10-19 10:10:04
78.   ChrisS
I know I won't cry myself to sleep because Torre was insulted by a $5 million/year offer.

Usually Rubenstein does all the talking for George, in this case he didn't and look what happens. Everybody wants to martyr Joe. He made a fortune, cemented his place in the HoF, and won some rings. The Yankees wanted to make a change, or at least, have some semblance of control over Torre's position. If it weren't for all the media attention, Torre would have turned down the offer and move on. Instead, we've had hourly updates on how the Yankees are mistreating poor ol' Uncle Joe.

2007-10-19 10:10:17
79.   ChrisS
I know I won't cry myself to sleep because Torre was insulted by a $5 million/year offer.

Usually Rubenstein does all the talking for George, in this case he didn't and look what happens. Everybody wants to martyr Joe. He made a fortune, cemented his place in the HoF, and won some rings. The Yankees wanted to make a change, or at least, have some semblance of control over Torre's position. If it weren't for all the media attention, Torre would have turned down the offer and move on. Instead, we've had hourly updates on how the Yankees are mistreating poor ol' Uncle Joe.

2007-10-19 10:10:23
80.   williamnyy23
64 That is a very relevant example. Feel free to make as many Cost of Living adjustments as you like. Torre was paid much more handsomely than Cox despite having the same productivity (assuming everyone is right and managers have little influence in the post season).

If not for the money, what is the principle? If one's principle is they can't accept a pay cut, then isn't it about the money. Besides, whenever someone says it's not about the's about the money.

2007-10-19 10:11:30
81.   williamnyy23
72 I agree with you on both counts.
2007-10-19 10:15:44
82.   Jersey
Courtesy of River Ave Blues, Torre is having his own press conference at 2pm today. Sorry if this was posted already.
2007-10-19 10:16:12
83.   weeping for brunnhilde
Thanks, Cliff, for such a thorough report, as usual.

IMO playing more small-ball is just what this team needs, so if Mattingly brings that to the table I'd be interested.

Likewise, if Girardi brings to the table a martinet's attention to fundamentals, then I say he's our best shot.

I'm sick to death of watching our guys get out-fundamentaled by the opposition.

2007-10-19 10:19:30
84.   williamnyy23
More perspective: NYT, 4/10/04

''This is the last major league team I'm going to manage,'' said Torre, 63, at a Yankee Stadium news conference. ''And I'm very proud to say that, because this is a hell of a place to hang your hat.''

Torre, who is in the final year of a three-year, $16.5 million deal, will make $6.1 million in 2005 and 2006 and $7 million in 2007. He will also receive bonuses for winning the American League pennant or the World Series, as he did in his last deal.

2007-10-19 10:23:35
85.   Schteeve
As much as I think it barely matters who manages the team, I think Mattingly would be terrible.

My vote is for Girardi.

2007-10-19 10:24:21
86.   JL25and3
75 Again, the point I'm making isn't whether Torre should have found the offer unacceptable, or whether we think it's unacceptable, or whether the Yankees needed to accept any terms Joe wanted. It's whether they made the offer with the knowledge - and intention - that he would in fact find it unacceptable.

Again, I don't think either the salary or the one-year deal was necessarily the main problem. I think it was the message that he had to prove his worth all over again.

As for crying myself to sleep over his turning down a $5M deal, of course not (neither will Joe). But if the Yankees offer Rivera or Posada $5M a year - because, after all, the Yankees haven't won a Series since 2000 - they'll have to know they'll refuse it, even though I still won't cry myself to sleep.

2007-10-19 10:29:29
87.   RIYank
83 IMO playing more small-ball is just what this team needs

"Hey, who ordered the dead horse?"

"Oh, that's us, yeah, bring it on in."

"Okay, but if you want us to move that other dead horse out of the living room to make way, we'll have to charge you extra."

"Nah, no problem, just leave it. We have room for a whole bunch of dead horses."

2007-10-19 10:29:32
88.   Sliced Bread
80 Cox was as productive as Joe in NY?
Um, no. Yet another reason your comparison is irrelevant.
2007-10-19 10:34:00
89.   weeping for brunnhilde
I'm certainly not versed in the ins and outs of contract negotiation, but to judge from the debate, wasn't this precisely how they (mis)-handled Andy?

If they'd wanted to keep Andy around, they would have. Instead, they dicked around with with him and he walked.

If they'd wanted to keep Joe, they would have.

Same with Mo.

A savvy organization doesn't treat its personnel in a way they can foresee is going to ruffle their feathers.

I don't think the issue here is about whether the offer was "objectively" fair or whether Joe "unreasonably" rejected said fair offer.

The bottom line is the deal didn't get done and the onus is on the organization, which actually has the resources to make unreasonable deals (it does so as a matter of course, in fact, albeit selectively).

The precedent of Andy and now Joe bodes ill for our chances of retaining Andy, Mo and Jorgie and that prospect terrifies me.

2007-10-19 10:34:55
90.   weeping for brunnhilde
87 heh heh heh hehe!

Hey, not my fault, Cliff brought it up!

2007-10-19 10:35:00
91.   OldYanksFan
Since the threads are now posting fast and furious, I would like to post a response to the last thread.

"But I also understand that the Yankees would still be paying more well more than any other manager is earning. It's not bad business on their part."

First off, the 'low balling' of Torre was not about money. The $2m they took from his salary will now go directly to Mo, or Po, or both. Please, lets not even talk about the Yankees trying to 'save' $2m/yr.

And while $5m is a hugh amount, and indeed much more then any other manager, we all KNOW that the issue is how it compares to his last salary. And more specifically, the connotations that this 'cost savings' measure had.

However, while the 'cut' was bad, while a 1 year (only) contract was real bad, I guess they can be excused as 'Its Business'.

I think what caused Torre to be truly insulted to the point of leaving (which he did NOT want to do), was the 'incentive' clause. This was an in-your-face insult as plain as day. How could he allow the FO to insinuate that he wasn't 'really trying' his best? And if Torre and the Yanks did win the WS in 2008, which was certainly (and is hopefully still) a very real possibility, would that indeed prove that Torre wasn't 'motivated' in the previous years? How Clever! Torre wins the WS in 2008 and therefore proves he was dogging it in his previous years!

And yes, if Torre ONLY did what Cleveland hasn't done in 59 years, what the Red Sox have done once in the last 89 years, then good 'ol Joe would be vested into yet another ONE year deal.

No.... the dollars in themselves were not insulting. But the contract as a whole... with these 'motivational' terms... wow! VERY CLEVER!

I gotta give the FO credit. This was really diabolically clever.

2007-10-19 10:37:40
92.   tommyl
91 Um, Torre had incentive clauses in most of his previous deals. Maybe not exactly the same, but they were there.
2007-10-19 10:37:43
93.   JL25and3
83 Jeez, they led the league in sacfirice bunts and were 4th in stolen bases. How much smaller do you want them to be?
2007-10-19 10:37:54
94.   weeping for brunnhilde
91 "And while $5m is a hugh amount, and indeed much more then any other manager, we all KNOW that the issue is how it compares to his last salary. And more specifically, the connotations that this 'cost savings' measure had."

The issue is also how it compares to the organization's revenues.

As long as the organization generates the revenue it does, it's eminently reasonable to expect its personnel to expect their personal salaries to reflect that, despite the fact that Pittsburgh or who-the-fuck-ever only pays its manager a third of that or whatever it is.

2007-10-19 10:40:09
95.   weeping for brunnhilde
93 Ah, my dear JL, when the season begins, and we can watch inning-by-inning together, never you fear: I'll be happy to point out all the ways I want them to be smaller ballers.

It's about context and application for me, not gross total of this or that small-ball metric.

Or was that a rhetorical question?


2007-10-19 10:41:52
96.   JL25and3
92 But they were with pay raises, not pay cuts. In this case, he had to "prove himself" in order to get last year's salary, not a bonus.
2007-10-19 10:42:34
97.   williamnyy23
88 Not sure if you caught my caveat, but if only making the playoffs counts (which has been a theme today), then yes, Cox has been as successful, if not more.

Torre was paid $6.5mn to make the World Series...his ability to do that is why he was far and away the highest paid manager. If you accept that, then it stands to reason that he should take a pay cut. If, however, you fall in the camp that says the playoffs are a crap shoot, well, then Cox was more successful than Joe.

2007-10-19 10:46:36
98.   williamnyy23
92 can't argue that Torre objected to the sing for your supper incentives when his current contract already had them.
2007-10-19 10:47:21
99.   monkeypants
63 "I don't see why this should be true. Why are tactical decisions more likely in the post-season? Also, what is the difference between short-term tactics and long-term strategy?"

Simple--take an example.

During the regular season, your #4 starter is getting smacked around in the 5th inning. However, you have used your BP heavily, so you tell him to take one for the team and go another inning or two; or, you send in a bad pitcher to preserve you better BP arms and not overuse them throughout the season. Or, you rest your starting catcher two days out of seven so he doesn't get worn down, basically sacrificing offense for a game or two for the good of the season.

In the post season, however, thinking becomes highly short-term. You don't have a #4 starter because your season is five or seven games long with off days. You never rest a batter because each AB and each game is much more important. You tend to ride BP arms more than in the regular season. And so on.

The post-season is a short term situation, not a 162 game marathon, and hence tactical (short term) concerns outweigh strategic (long term) concerns.

2007-10-19 10:48:26
100.   JL25and3
95 And I'll probably disagree with you almost every time, of course. But then, that's what we're here for, right?
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-10-19 10:49:16
101.   tommyl
96 I'm not debating that, but the point was made that Joe was more insulted by the incentives part, I think the concept of incentives themselves cannot be argued to be a problem. Now, perhaps you want to argue the specific details of the incentives, but that's a different story.
2007-10-19 10:50:33
102.   weeping for brunnhilde
100 Indeed!

Sigh, but until then, months of darkness and cold.


2007-10-19 10:53:51
103.   tommyl
99 I like this post. Put another way, during the season its often good to take a general's perspective and realize that over the long haul little tactical decisions don't much matter. Sure you may lose a platoon or two but you want to win the war. The postseason is like being a lieutenant, every platoon is important and tactics become much more important. I think that's why Joe has become more exposed in the postseason the past few years. Look in '98 that team was going to steamroll everyone in its path. In other years they had such dominant starting pitching it could cover up some managerial mistakes. But starting in 2003, as the starting rotation has dropped off and other teams have become more competitive the in game tactics have become more important.
2007-10-19 10:55:05
104.   RIYank
99 I see that the decisions are different (different factors are relevant/important). But I don't see why you think good and bad managerial decisions are more likely to affect the outcome of a play-off game.

Take your example. There's Moose on the mound, two base runners and no outs in a close game, fifth inning, he looks like he has nothing today. I agree that if it's a June game against Seattle, you're more likely to leave him in than if it's an October game, for the reasons you gave. But why is a good or bad decision more likely to affect the outcome of the October game? Is that what you're saying, or have I misunderstood?

2007-10-19 10:56:13
105.   YankeeInMichigan
How about Lloyd Carr? I heard that he'll be available by January. And if A-Rod leaves, he may be able to rehabilitate Drew Henson at 3rd.
2007-10-19 10:56:53
106.   Shaun P
Does anyone know if the Torre press conference is being shown online? I know ESPN is carrying it on TV.
2007-10-19 10:58:29
107.   Shaun P
106 Never mind. If you go to, and click on video, there it is.
2007-10-19 10:58:44
108.   Bama Yankee
105 Good one. Do you really think Michigan will get rid of Carr? If so, who do you think they will get to replace him? Possibly Les Miles?
2007-10-19 11:02:06
109.   Deadhorse
Oy. Joe's presser hasn't started yet and my ribs already hurt from the beatin' I'm takin' up in this Banter.
2007-10-19 11:07:07
110.   RIYank
Wow. So, the BB-ers who said the incentives were the problem were right. Also the one year.
2007-10-19 11:07:09
111.   monkeypants
104 I don't know if such decisions are more likely to affect the outcome of an October game, but since there are not 162 games for things to "balance out", nor for long term strengths (keeping players happy and productive) to outweight tactical weaknesses (giving 4 ABs to a low OBP guy leading off, failure to employ best relievers in high level scenarios, whatever), there is a greater chance that a tactical blunder will cost a run, and hence a game, and hence a series. The sort of blunder that might otherwise be hidden in the course of 162 game season.

I guess my real point is that just because managerial decisions might "cost" or "gain" a team only two wins in 162 games--using your guestimate--does not imply that they will only affect the outcome of .09 games per 7 game playoff series.

But I sense that I may have lost track of my own argument...

2007-10-19 11:07:32
112.   Deadhorse
High Road Joe. I love this guy.
2007-10-19 11:08:19
113.   tommyl
What's he saying?
2007-10-19 11:08:50
114.   YankeeInMichigan
91 Exactly. Randy Levine's opening remarks at the press conference ( has the link) said it all: "We all respect Joe Torre ... however, we haven't won a world series in seven years ... of course, no individual is solely responsible ...." The clear implication here is that since Torre hasn't won any championships recently, he doesn't deserve a guaranteed $7.5 million contract.

According to Cashman, it was Torre's idea to come down to Tampa and meet with the brass face-to-face. Cash also believes that Torre was undecided on his decision when he boarded the plain. Perhaps Torre wanted to judge the body language of the Tampa crowd to see where they were coming from. If Levine presented the same stance to Torre that he presented to the media, I can understand why he was turned off.

2007-10-19 11:10:07
115.   YankeeInMichigan
108 Carr gave each of his assistants two-year contracts this year, so he seems to be planning an exit strategy.
2007-10-19 11:10:35
116.   Bama Yankee
102 Weeping, as you probably know, I'm with you about playing smaller ball (is a squeeze play too much to ask). In the postseason when runs are a premium and pitching is at it's best (at least for everyone else), I would like for our guys to have had a little practice moving the runners over and scoring that extra run by a bunt and sac fly if possible.
2007-10-19 11:12:22
117.   Deadhorse
Interesting choice of words thanking Cashman for his support last year (emphasis his).

Cash hung him out to dry this week.

2007-10-19 11:12:25
118.   Bama Yankee
115 Thanks. Are there any rumblings up there about getting Miles from LSU?
2007-10-19 11:12:34
119.   SF Yanks
Fu*k, I'm gonna miss Joe. This sucks...
2007-10-19 11:14:07
120.   RIYank

He said (in so many words) that the incentives were an insult. And the one-year deal he thinks will just add a circus atmosphere (not his words) at the end of next year, which he doesn't want.
There were no negotiations, he says, they just said take it or leave it.

Now (in response to a question) he says that they didn't ask him what it would take to get him back.

Ohhhh, here comes a hard question...

2007-10-19 11:14:24
121.   Shaun P
110 Anyone getting the ESPN link to work? I just keep seeing this Cisco ad.
2007-10-19 11:14:43
122.   thelarmis
joe is so classy and honest and wonderful. i miss him tons...

he was hoping there'd be more negotiating the contract. joe didn't want to be in a lame duck position.

he's evading the 'offer to refuse' bit.

no tears yet. some chokeup in the beginning. when he mentions players, he'll lose it.

2007-10-19 11:14:44
123.   SF Yanks
117 I caught that too. I felt the same way.
2007-10-19 11:15:29
124.   RIYank
They asked him whether he thought they wanted him to come back or were just making an offer he wouldn't accept. He says he'll leave that for the reporters to decide.

Ah, he now says: the salary reduction told him they thought he wasn't doing a good job.

2007-10-19 11:16:12
125.   RIYank
121 I have it working, but it's a few seconds behind my ESPN radio feed so I'm not really watching it.
2007-10-19 11:16:15
126.   YankeeInMichigan
118 It's been mentioned, usually with a follow-up of "no way will he leave." Jim Harbaugh has been mentioned as well.
2007-10-19 11:16:21
127.   yankz
Torre's words:

2007-10-19 11:16:21
128.   thelarmis
not the $, but the paycut showing dissatisfaction w/ his job.

2 years would've made a big difference. they wouldn't hear joe's pleading...

2007-10-19 11:16:50
129.   Shaun P
117 It is possible that by "last year" he meant the 2007 season.

I have been referring to it as "last year" since the Indians won Game 4.

2007-10-19 11:18:18
130.   thelarmis
129 nope, he pretty much specified it was the season before after detroit...

he said the hardest part this year was these 10 days of waiting. likened it to going to the doctor and waiting for the result...

2007-10-19 11:19:08
131.   Deadhorse
129 I took it as "the past."
2007-10-19 11:19:43
132.   thelarmis
sorry if this was posted earlier - trey hillman signed a multi-year deal to manage the KC Royals...
2007-10-19 11:20:31
133.   RIYank
Someone asked whether he would reconsider if the FO came back to him now. Joe says: I can't say, but (a) there has to be trust on both sides, and (b) I do want to be the manager here. (At least I think that's what he said.)
2007-10-19 11:20:37
134.   yankz
"Yes, it was a very generous offer."
2007-10-19 11:21:03
135.   thelarmis
joe recognizes he wasn't truly "wanted" here to manage any longer. was indeed a "generous offer". he doesn't anticipate a change of heart by the yanks FO...
2007-10-19 11:21:19
136.   Deadhorse
2007-10-19 11:21:59
137.   yankz
Did he name any "allies"?
2007-10-19 11:22:51
138.   yankz
Didn't sound like he had any allies.
2007-10-19 11:22:56
139.   YankeeInMichigan
49 Rubenstein is no longer issuing statements because the Yanks are trying to get across the point that George has stepped aside and H&H are running the show. However, H&H are struggling to get a clue, so Randy Levine is usurping power in the void. This could get ugly.
2007-10-19 11:23:08
140.   thelarmis
whoa, joe is balking bigtime at the ? - "did you have any allies there (at the meeting)?

he ended up saying "a person or two." i don't think he believes that, though. that includes Cashman. yikes.

2007-10-19 11:24:49
141.   thelarmis
uh-oh, here come the "players." joe might lose it soon. sounds strong though. he's been candid and joking the whole time, thus far...
2007-10-19 11:25:24
142.   Deadhorse
Calm, cool, classy.

They're going to replace this guy HOW?

I hope the shitheads in Tampa are watching this as they wipe their noses with $100 dollar bills.

2007-10-19 11:26:25
143.   yankz
142 Agreed. Like him or not, he's undeniably classy.
2007-10-19 11:26:55
144.   yankz
I can't believe I have to go. thelarmis, Barbaro, I'm expecting you to keep the liveblog up!
2007-10-19 11:27:02
145.   thelarmis
joe just referred to it as "i just lost my job." it was in a joking fashion, but he's looking at it as he was fired 'coz he wasn't wanted, not that he turned down an offer.
2007-10-19 11:27:26
146.   ChrisS
It's a goddamn baseball team. This soap opera is getting tiresome.

Awful nice of ol' classy uncle Joe to lob some bombs before departing. But, thankfully, we can get on to the business that really matters, which players will be on the field next year for the '08 Yankees.

2007-10-19 11:27:52
147.   tommyl
140 Actually, I feel better about things for this team if Cashman wanted him out as well. At least that means Cash wasn't overruled by Levine or another Tampa crony. I've been suspicious all year with Cash trading away some of Joe's toys (Proctor) to replace other toys (Cairo), Cash forcing callups (Edwar) and imposing rules (Joba). This is the first year we heard about anything like these things. In years past it was always which vet would Joe ask for next. Cashman just might have gotten fed up butting heads on a number of issues and felt it was time for a change.
2007-10-19 11:28:22
148.   thelarmis
144 i gotchya back, bro. i'll do my best...

142 word. this sucks. he should be our manager.

2007-10-19 11:28:27
149.   Shaun P
Thank you all for this liveblog, because I just can't get the ESPN video feed to work. Don't know why.

If someone has an alternative link, I'd be grateful.

2007-10-19 11:28:59
150.   pistolpete
136 5 million with 2 guaranteed years would have gotten it done.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2007-10-19 11:29:23
151.   tommyl
147 Also, do you guys remember that article that many in the FO at some point this season were so frustrated that they wouldn't callup certain players or make certain moves because the line was, "Joe won't play them anyways"? I really don't think this is just about the PS loss.
2007-10-19 11:30:39
152.   thelarmis
keeps saying "it's not the money." falls back on committment & trust.

won't name names on replacements. just says "be yourself" and protect players so they can do their job.

just asked about slimeball levine. "i don't deal w/ randy, i deal with brian cashman." i deal w/ GM and that's that.

2007-10-19 11:30:43
153.   tommyl
Liveblog at:

2007-10-19 11:31:09
154.   pistolpete
151 I think a lot of us shared that sentiment, but he was getting better towards the end of this season.

I'm not sure if that was his own doing or not, but I liked what I saw. Including guys like Ohlendorf and Veras on the PS roster gave me hope for the future...

2007-10-19 11:31:52
155.   Deadhorse
Feelings about Levine?
"I don't deal with Levine."

What does that tell you?

It tells me fuck you Randy Levine.

149 Did you try

or perhaps

2007-10-19 11:32:36
156.   RIYank
Asked: are there any decisions you'd do differently, in retrospect?

JT: you might think the 2004 ps, but I wouldn't. If anything, this year I'd go out and get those bugs all over me, maybe get the umpires to do something...

2007-10-19 11:32:37
157.   thelarmis
talking about 04 LCS. only regret - the midges this year in Game 2. wishes he was more proactive about possibly stopping the game or something.
2007-10-19 11:32:45
158.   williamnyy23
As expected, Joe has handled this with class. Clearly, he didn't feel appreciated. I guess you can't argue with that. I still don't think you can blame the Yankees for not appreciating more, but that's another story.

One thing I take away from this is Torre doesn't blame Steinbrenner because George didn't play a prominent role. Clearly, he sees Hank, Hal and Randy Levine as a business trio, not baseball people. What that tells me is that Torre would come back if G.S. made a personal appeal to him. Sadly, I don't think George is in the physical condition to do that anymore.

2007-10-19 11:34:16
159.   Shaun P
155 I did not. Thanks, Deadhorse.

I wish the video feed would work for me. Sigh.

2007-10-19 11:34:35
160.   thelarmis
158 yeah, he's thanked Boss George a whole bunch, including the very first thing he said.

"hal, hank & george now running yanks as a family"

2007-10-19 11:34:59
161.   Jersey
147 Very good point
2007-10-19 11:35:12
162.   Deadhorse
158 The headline between the lines is that Cashman turned his back on Joe.
He'll have to answer to that.

Says Hal, Hank, and George were all there. Running the team as a family. Sons are part of the decision -making process, but George will never be out of that process.

2007-10-19 11:35:35
163.   pistolpete
I hope the brass is taking a lesson from this and the Bernie situation - we can't afford to lose guys like Mo and Jorge. They need to not only be thrown a lot of money, but they need to be wooed as well.
2007-10-19 11:35:45
164.   tommyl
158 Its been a rumor for years that George has wanted Joe out but hasn't because of fear of fan backlash. Now that its done (and the blood isn't on his hands) I really don't see him making a personal appeal. I still think most telling is that Cashman appears to not be on his side this year. That saved him last year.
2007-10-19 11:36:21
165.   thelarmis
joe is funny, calm, classy, respectful and "at peace". still, he's nervous and choked up (at times) and doesn't understand his popularity (personally, not as team victories).

sorry for my horrible broken english today...

2007-10-19 11:37:09
166.   RIYank
Q: Did you tell them specifically what it would take to bring you back?
A: It was more of a concept that I gave them.

(He won't say specifically, but he does say he didn't ask for money, more about 'terms'.)

2007-10-19 11:38:04
167.   tommyl
165 No worries, I wanted him out (not like this though) and I'm choked up. I think he was the right manager in 1996, I just don't think so anymore. That in no way diminishes my respect and gratitude towards him. This is a sad day no matter who you wanted to manage next year.
2007-10-19 11:40:23
168.   thelarmis
LDS is crapshoot. luck. run into hot pitching.

he's heard from lotsa players. he'd like to manage again, but it'll sure be different than the yanks. sounds like he'd field offers

2007-10-19 11:40:28
169.   NJYankee41
Thanks for the updates guys. I am unable to watch or listen to anything, so this is certainly the next best thing.

Joe always kept a sense of sanity around the team that I hope doesn't get lost, but I fear it will.

Crazy thought of the day: For some reason I have a gut feeling that Joe may manage this team again. It's just one of those things I feel.

2007-10-19 11:41:16
170.   williamnyy23
162 Cashman has a one year deal would be foolish to think Cashman should stick his neck out to get Torre a long-term deal. Cashman backed up Joe last season...I don't think he had an obligation to do it again.
2007-10-19 11:41:44
171.   pistolpete
169 According to Francessa's speculation, it could be as soon as 2009 if the Yanks miss the playoffs next year.
2007-10-19 11:42:08
172.   thelarmis
he's still amazed at the incredible WS run.

no comment on Yanks changing tune and possibly asking him back in a year for the opening of the House that A-Rod Built...

2007-10-19 11:42:18
173.   Deadhorse
169 He's done a great job today keeping that door open.
2007-10-19 11:43:00
174.   RIYank
Pete Abe asked whether he'd be open to managing again: JT says it would depend on what kind of job. (So, I guess that means yes.)
2007-10-19 11:43:00
175.   williamnyy23
167 I feel the same way. I think it was time for Joe to step aside, but I would have liked for him to ride off into the sunset. In a situation like this, eggs are going to be broken.
2007-10-19 11:43:05
176.   thelarmis
169 i kinda have that feeling, too. we'll see...
2007-10-19 11:44:39
177.   RIYank
Asked: how have you been so successful dealing with the NY media? His answer: well, they aren't very smart, these people.
2007-10-19 11:44:58
178.   thelarmis
he calls us fans "special." craves support, hates confrontation. loves NY...

joe still cracking jokes. awesome!

2007-10-19 11:45:17
179.   Deadhorse
170 Can't wait to see how much Cashman enjoys the pay cut, and postseason incentives.
Performance, performance, performance, Cash.
Dance for ya supper baby! Earn it, earn it, earn it for Randy Levine!
2007-10-19 11:46:08
180.   thelarmis
about to get choked up - talking about family. specifically, wife/daughter...
2007-10-19 11:46:12
181.   williamnyy23
179 Cashman has been dancing for years...if you want to make Joe a victim, Cashman isn't the bad guy.
2007-10-19 11:46:17
182.   Simone
Joe is pure class. I'll never get over missing him just like with Bernie.
2007-10-19 11:46:34
183.   rbj
172 It sounded cold -- but I guess the wound is still fresh.
2007-10-19 11:47:08
184.   williamnyy23
Joe just said Cashman wanted him that enough to end speculation that Cash hung Torre out to dry?
2007-10-19 11:48:18
185.   thelarmis
trying to dig up the "allies" again. okay, now, Joe brings up Cash and says they have a 'special relationship'. "i think brian and i were comfortable together"

anyone else in FO on your side? "i can't be sure." no response to joe's requests.

espn just cut it off. i think it's on espn news. i don't get that channel. sorry folks.

2007-10-19 11:49:33
186.   Deadhorse
184 High Road, meet williamnyy23.
William, meet High Road.

Cash hung him out to dry. Read between the lines, bro.

But be very clear. Nobody. NOBODY is calling Joe a victim.

He's a WINNER.

2007-10-19 11:49:44
187.   RIYank
184 My radio station dropped the conference, so I'm back on the ESPN web feed and behind you again. I was about to ask you 'when did he say that?' and then he said it!
2007-10-19 11:50:46
188.   RIYank
186 Seriously, I think you've misunderstood. I thought Torre was unequivocal, though subtle. Cash tried to 'work things out' for him.
2007-10-19 11:51:32
189.   williamnyy23
186 You keep reading between the lines...I'll listen to what is actually being said.
2007-10-19 11:51:51
190.   Jersey
189 LMAO
2007-10-19 11:52:41
191.   RIYank
Denies that managing in the new Stadium was important. 'never came into it'.
2007-10-19 11:53:19
192.   Deadhorse
189 Randy Levine also said he wanted Joe back. You believe that? C'mon William.

190 me too!

2007-10-19 11:55:06
193.   williamnyy23
192 There is a reason why Levine might not be truthful. Torre doesn't have the same motivation. If Torre didn't thijnk he had Cashman's support, he wouldn't have said it. I am sorry you don't trust what he says.
2007-10-19 11:55:20
194.   thelarmis
cashman probably on the hot seat next season as much, if not more, than new manager...
2007-10-19 11:55:54
195.   Dimelo
182 I agree. I really respect the guy. I am listening and I had a tear come down. I am seriously, seriously going to miss him. Some thought he was overvalued, he did this and that wrong, but for me he made me proud to be a Yankee fan. The players always ran hard down the first base line for him, the players respected him and he had 99% of the people that came in contact with him say great things about him - except Sheffield and a few others.

I am going to miss him...I like the drama, he's earned it.

2007-10-19 11:55:56
196.   Deadhorse
193 I trust him when he says Cashman supported him last year... and leaves the thought hanging.
2007-10-19 11:56:40
197.   Deadhorse
193 and his motivation is called the High Road. Take it some time.
2007-10-19 11:57:16
198.   williamnyy23
196 But not when he says Cashman wanted him back. Selective, but your right to be.
2007-10-19 11:58:04
199.   JL25and3
97 "Torre was paid $6.5mn to make the World Series...his ability to do that is why he was far and away the highest paid manager. If you accept that, then it stands to reason that he should take a pay cut."

No. If he was paid to make the World Series, then he didn't do the job and shouldn't be rehired.

If he's paid less, does that mean he's hired to do less?

2007-10-19 11:59:17
200.   williamnyy23
197 Yes...the high impressive profile in courage.
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2007-10-19 12:00:32
201.   Deadhorse
200 Having fun in your Randy Levine jersey are ya?
2007-10-19 12:01:27
202.   RIYank
If he were to manage somewhere else, he says, he certainly wouldn't be expected to be paid as much as the Yankees paid him. (I think he said because the Yanks paid him for what he did with the Yanks.)
2007-10-19 12:02:37
203.   pistolpete
199 Or at the very least, the salary should be significantly less and the expectations should be lowered.

But, this is the monster that was created by '96-'00.

2007-10-19 12:02:58
204.   JL25and3
151 Eh, I didn't give that a lot of credence. It sounded to me more like a disgruntled contraTorreista, one who wanted to undermine him without any responsibility.
2007-10-19 12:03:11
205.   williamnyy23
199 If you feel that way, fine. I still think a business can want to retain an employee, but at a reduced salary that matches achievement. It happens all the time...I wasn't aware that was an insult.
2007-10-19 12:03:53
206.   williamnyy23
201 Yep...I think they are going to give him #6.
2007-10-19 12:04:00
207.   SF Yanks
Stupid effing reporters asking the same damn questions that Joe doesn't want to answer. Ugh! Idiots.
2007-10-19 12:05:48
208.   Deadhorse
206 before or after they cut his pay, and make him dance for his dollas? you know, for failing to preside over a championship club.
2007-10-19 12:06:27
209.   JL25and3
205 So if they paid him less, then they're only paying him to reach the playoffs. After that, it's OK to mail it in.
2007-10-19 12:07:29
210.   williamnyy23
208 Cut his pay? I think they are going to give him all seven of Torre's millions as a bonus.
2007-10-19 12:09:31
211.   RIYank
The press conference is running out of steam, I'd say. It's turned into truisms.
2007-10-19 12:10:09
212.   Raf
200 Better that than going out the Sheffield way...
2007-10-19 12:10:27
213.   Deadhorse
210 no, that's not how these lean mean Yanks roll, william. You know that...
2007-10-19 12:10:30
214.   joejoejoe
I find it funny that Steve Phillips is on ESPN talking about what it takes to succeed in NY.
2007-10-19 12:10:54
215.   ChrisS
Wow, some people are seriously disgruntled.

I guess Torre should have been given a pass to manage the Yankees into perpetuity.

Hell, I'd love to see Torre manage again, give him the Nationals or the D-Rays. I'd bet he'd manage 'em right into the post-season!

2007-10-19 12:14:11
216.   tommyl
215 It will be interesting if Joe decides to take another job somewhere. If he doesn't make the postseason with a decent team (say the Dodgers) does some of the luster wear off? People forget that until '96 Joe was a mediocre manager. Ok, but on the whole losing and nothing spectacular. The Yankees have won with other managers you guys know, right? I mean Joe didn't win all 26 :).

214 Steve Phillips is a buffoon. There's a reason he's on ESPN and not out there working for some real team.

2007-10-19 12:14:45
217.   Deadhorse
215 stay classy, Chris!
2007-10-19 12:14:57
218.   Raf
215 I don't think Torre should manage the Yanks into perpetuity, but you would think that after 12 years on the job that the Yanks would have the gumption to either make a decent offer, or cut him loose. It's the least they could do, and they couldn't even do that.
2007-10-19 12:16:32
219.   williamnyy23
Joe Torre was a great Yankee manager.

Joe Torre has a lot of class.

Joe Torre was no longer the best man to lead the Yankees.

The Yankees should have simply let him ago instead of offering another contract.

Both Joe and the Yankees are better off.

Those are my conclusions. If others want to waste time piling on both sides, so be it.

2007-10-19 12:16:52
220.   JL25and3
215 You keep missing the point. Not re-hiring him would have been a reasonable decision to make. But they didn't do that.
2007-10-19 12:17:25
221.   tommyl
218 That I wholeheartedly agree with. They should have either just fired him, or if they wanted him back allow for some negotiations. If they wiggle a little bit and Joe still doesn't like it, then you can really say that you tried your best to bring him back but you just couldn't agree. I've never seen an offer made to someone of his experience with no wiggle room whatsoever.
2007-10-19 12:17:27
222.   williamnyy23
217 Maybe he is just beating the same deadhorse that you have been?
2007-10-19 12:17:45
223.   SF Yanks
Holy Crap! Steve Phillips just made sense! What is this world coming to?
2007-10-19 12:18:25
224.   tommyl
223 What did he say?
2007-10-19 12:19:53
225.   Raf
223 The law of averages, my friend, the law of averages...
2007-10-19 12:20:48
226.   tommyl
225 Dear lord, if he says small sample size hell might be freezing over.
2007-10-19 12:23:35
227.   joejoejoe
224 A 250 pound, 34-year old Mo Vaughn was a good fit for a league with no DH.
2007-10-19 12:25:11
228.   JL25and3
227 Oh. I thought he said he'd be looking for a new job. I'd expect ESPN and/or Fox to offer Joe a pot of money.
2007-10-19 12:26:00
229.   NC Highlander
I'm already tired of taking crap on this subject from red sux fans who somehow think that because they won 1 series in the last 85 years they know what's best for the yankees front office.

Or perhaps they are gloating over this.

Either way it's getting on my nerves.

2007-10-19 12:27:29
230.   SF Yanks
224 He just put into simple words how the Yanks FO are slimy bunch.

The usual Phillips would have said something to the extent of, "$5 mill is much more than a homeless person makes. Take the deal Joe!"

2007-10-19 12:29:26
231.   SF Yanks
224 Actually what he really said was that, the FO had no intention of hiring him by not negotiating with him. So what they should have done was just let him go instead of putting up this charade.
2007-10-19 12:31:26
232.   tommyl
I gotta say, so far Randy Levine is not earning his performance based incentives ;). What a PR nightmare they have dreamed up.
2007-10-19 12:32:30
233.   Zack
Not sure its been posted b/c I don't feel like slogging through the archives ( I noted the deadhorse has already made an appearance!), but RLYW has a really good post the pretty much sums up my feelings. Except for the very last line.
2007-10-19 12:32:54
234.   ChrisS
220 225 et al. What if there was an impasse as to what to do with him? I'm sure there was faction that wanted to retain him, and a faction that wanted him gone. The compromise was to offer a 1 year deal with an team option for less than what he made before. Torre said no.

Oh well. Life goes on. If the Yankees were run by a single dominant owner (like they were in the past), he would have been brought back under another 3-year deal or he would have been told to hit the road.

Compromises are sometimes messy.

But please continue to beatify Joe.

2007-10-19 12:37:22
235.   Sliced Bread
232 Ah, the Steinbrothers are just hiding behind Levine.
I don't have a good feeling about Sons of George. They handled Joe horribly, and the stench is going to linger until they have some "feel good" news to announce.
So who's the manager Steinbros?
2007-10-19 12:42:02
236.   tommyl
235 Not so sure on that one. Levine has been trying to get more power for quite sometime. The one thing Joe said that irks me is that when he walked into the meeting he saw "businessmen" not "baseball people." That's very Joe Morganesque in saying that anyone who hasn't played the game doesn't understand certain "things" about baseball. Well they're the FO people, they are supposed to be executives. Yes they care about winning and making money, are these bad things? What should they care about? That attitude has always annoyed me.
2007-10-19 12:44:32
237.   ChrisS
233 After reading RLYW, I'm kinda looking forward to the exodus. Imagine, A-Rod, Pettitte, Clemens, Posada, and Rivera leaving. Then having Giambi, Pavano, and Mussina off the books. I'm all for the guys sticking around if they want to, but I'd rather not have them moping around for the rest of their contracts. If they're not happy playing in NY, and being paid well for it, then there's the door. That's a fortune, plus a bunch of high draft picks for compensation of losing their free agents. I'd let Stick and Cashman start building a dynasty again. Enough of this win-now at the expense of the future non-sense that's starting to creep in.

Hello Johan Santana and a new look for the Yankees.

2007-10-19 12:44:50
238.   JoeInRI
236 I think it's one thing to say that about Theo Epstein or Paul DePodesta . . .

. . . Randy Levine cares about Randy Levine.

2007-10-19 12:45:56
239.   JoeInRI
237 Hello 1982
2007-10-19 12:45:59
240.   Raf
234 If there's an impasse, then the status quo remains.

It's not that difficult. If they want to keep him, they negotiate. If they don't want to keep him, they let him walk.

If you can't see anything wrong with what went down, then we'll just have to agree to disagree.

2007-10-19 12:46:02
241.   tommyl
238 Cashman was in that room too. That's all I'm saying.
2007-10-19 12:47:12
242.   Schteeve
Those NoMaas guys were a bit too dogmatic in my opinion. If they really are closing up shop, I can't say I'll miss them terribly.
2007-10-19 12:48:06
243.   JoeInRI
238 Sure he was and I'm not disagreeing . . . but what is Cashman's job description and what's Levine's?
2007-10-19 12:48:43
244.   Raf
236 Usually businessmen are poor talent evaluators. That's why they have baseball people running the show :)
2007-10-19 12:50:33
245.   Raf
239 The return of the Bronx Burners? Oh noes!
2007-10-19 12:51:30
246.   nemecizer
I left work early to watch the press conference. I broke up during it. Joe Torre has been the manager of the Yankees for almost 1/3 of my life. He drove me crazy at times, but I am really going to miss him. No matter what was happening, come Spring time I could always turn on the TV, see him sitting the dugout, and escape from the world for 3-4 hours. He was a constant. Now he's gone.

It's not easy, even if I think it was time.

And for those who bash the man (not many here) he could have torn Levine, Cashman, and the Steinbrenners a new one. He could have really let it rip. But he didn't.

2007-10-19 12:52:38
247.   nemecizer
242 I suspect they will be back in some form or another, I had the feeling they were just getting going.
2007-10-19 13:03:45
248.   weeping for brunnhilde
Hey guys. I'm feeling glum.

I just watched Joe's statement on espn, but it doesn't include the Q and A.

Anyone have a link to that?

2007-10-19 13:04:33
249.   weeping for brunnhilde
Oh, and Joe's going to be on WFAN at 4:30...
2007-10-19 13:05:17
250.   NJYankee41
242 , 247 Did you guys see the link on the bottom of the page? They still have their regular site working. I think that front page is a nomaasian joke.
Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2007-10-19 13:05:23
251.   Yankee Fan In Boston
everything i would have to offer to this discussion has already been said.

i just wanted to nominate "steinbrothers" (235 ) as the official nickname for these two. it rolls off the tongue. nice, sliced.

2007-10-19 13:05:39
252.   OldYanksFan
29 I agree 1000%. Not only do these extra days off kill the continuity and tension of the playoffs, but they also use up 3 extra days that are critically needed to turn the DS from a 5 game to a 7 game series, which Bud says can't be done without shortening the regular season. F*cked up!
2007-10-19 13:07:26
253.   standuptriple
What's becoming clear to me is that the Yankees are exerting their power. Nobody was going to give Joe what they offered. Why should they bid against themselves? The groundwork is set for the A-Rod negotiations (who's presence will be much more of a factor to the team) that the Yanks will offer a fair price, but they aren't going to be pushed around by anybody. I like the way it was handled personally. If you don't like the way they are doing it, try and get more coin somewhere else.
2007-10-19 13:09:14
254.   joejoejoe
245 Dave Collins! Jerry Mumphrey! 5th place!
2007-10-19 13:09:16
255.   weeping for brunnhilde
219 Speaking for myself, william, your conclusions make sense and I agree with them.

But there's more than cold analysis at work here.

What's going on is trying to process the magnitude of the event, the transition from one era to another. There's a tremendous amount of emotion, memories, etc. bound up into this.

The issue now isn't so much the decision, but as you say, the manner in which it was carried out.

To see it end this way, so crudely, so callously, and carrying the possibility of spilling over into a radical bloodbath (Jorgie, Mo and Andy) is a lot to process, emotionally.

At least for me.

2007-10-19 13:13:06
256.   NJYankee41
255 Well said
2007-10-19 13:13:21
257.   yankz
251 How about "The Brothers Dim"?
2007-10-19 13:16:40
258.   yankz
I'm not too worried about Girardi WRT young pitching. If everyone on this board and all our mothers are skeptical, then Nardi/Eiland/Cash sure as shit will be too. And if they gave Torre rules on managing young arms, they will definitely do the same for Girardi. Besides, he'll be easy to fire if he refuses to comply.
2007-10-19 13:18:28
259.   YankeeInMichigan
251 How about H&H Bungles?
2007-10-19 13:18:39
260.   Adrian
253 The thing is, if during that process you come off as a total jackass, people will take less money elsewhere. Work environment is an issue, even for professional baseball players. Nothing about the Steinbrothers or Randy Levine says "I can make people feel valued." I got the sense that Torre was reacting to personalities rather than numbers. Although the Boss was totally ruthless, he and Torre were old enemies -- they'd each given each other well-earned scars.

In short, I think that the Boss earned the right to be the Boss. To have a bunch of new guys come in and start playing hardball with a man significantly their senior in both years and accomplishments -- well, I'd be insulted too.

2007-10-19 13:21:21
261.   standuptriple
Everybody is all worked up about how this ended. Newsflash. Endings are not pretty. That's why they end. Should Joe had ridden off into the sunset with a World Series Trophy and a ticker tape parade? It seems like that's the only acceptable way to show him the door for some people. The new regime has to save face somehow. It sucks that they're getting raked over the coals for their first major move (an emotional one to say the least). If they can't bring A-Rod, Jorge and Mo then I'll rip them, but they get a pass from me on this. They had to be the bad cop.
2007-10-19 13:22:24
262.   Yankee Fan In Boston
257 259 those are good, too.

$teinbrother$ just has a ring to it. (or... hopefully it will in a little more than a year from now.)

2007-10-19 13:22:58
263.   standuptriple
260 Players will take less $ to play elsewhere? It's Friday. I'll take what you're smoking.
2007-10-19 13:23:48
264.   yankz
263 Wes Helms, Damian Easley. Two guys that turned down the Yankees last winter for less money.
2007-10-19 13:28:45
265.   standuptriple
264 Who in their right minds would want either one of those scrubs? They both still have delusions of getting regular playing time.
2007-10-19 13:30:50
266.   Adrian
265 I don't see how that's relevant. They still walked away. And, keep in mind, A-Rod is a sensitive flower who wilts under anything less than ideal circumstances.
2007-10-19 13:32:39
267.   Bama Yankee
263 Didn't Andy Pettitte take less to play in Houston?
2007-10-19 13:34:04
268.   Raf
263 Farnsworth & Pavano took less to come here
2007-10-19 13:35:31
269.   tommyl
266 A-Rod is a sensitive flower who wilts? Were you not around this year? Coming off a down year when the media and his manager ripped him to shreds. Well I guess he didn't break Maris' record, so that's wilting.
2007-10-19 13:37:36
270.   williamnyy23
261 I agree. The Torre era had to come to an end sooner or later, and when that happened, it wasn't going to be pretty. In my perfect world, Torre would have retired two seasons ago and joined the YES booth or some other honorary position. In the Yankees perfect world, he would have taken the one year deal. In Torre's perfect world, the job would be is until he tired of it. It looks like no one got their wish.

Just for some perspective, in 1995, when Showalter was fired, I thought it was the end of the world. Buck had been a loyal organization guy and had finally brought the team back from the depths of my childhood. I couldn't understand how Steinbrenner could insult him with a low ball offer, and applauded Buck and "his little family" for walking away. I lamented that the likes of Stanley and Mattingly were also following him out the door. The future looked bleak, especially after a retread was hired to take the job. Twelve years and a lot of success later, it seems like we've come full circle.

2007-10-19 13:38:46
271.   Raf
261 If the new regime's trying to save face, they're doing a heck of a job...
2007-10-19 13:39:14
272.   yankz
267 He also turned down more from Boston.
2007-10-19 13:41:59
273.   Adrian
269 Look, I'm not saying he's a terrible player, but stress levels and unfavorable coverage do impact his performance. That said, even in a slump he's still damn good.
2007-10-19 13:42:39
274.   yankz
273 Not last year. IIRC, he went on a hot streak after Strippergate.
2007-10-19 13:43:30
275.   RIYank
Sheffield turned down more money to come to the Yankees. (That's one reason he was so pissed when they were talking about trading him two years ago.)
2007-10-19 13:46:01
276.   standuptriple
271 So they're supposed to let Joe entrench himself even more? I still don't see them as slapping him in the face. They just wanted him to be held a little more accountable. But I guess St. Joe is untouchable for some people. I'd rather the team do whatever it takes to win and I believe it can be done sans-Torre.
2007-10-19 13:50:02
277.   weeping for brunnhilde
261 You're entitled to your cynicism, but I'd like to point out that's what it is.

We all respond in our own way to traumas and transitions.

For the record, though, I think you're presenting a straw man. Between riding off into the sunset and being unceremoniously disrespected lies a world of possible, more humane outcomes.

2007-10-19 13:52:43
278.   RIYank
253 "If you don't like the way they are doing it, try and get more coin somewhere else. "

He didn't ask for more coin.

276 "But I guess St. Joe is untouchable for some people."

Straw man.

2007-10-19 13:57:04
279.   weeping for brunnhilde
276 If "St. Joe is untouchable" means "deserves to be treated with dignity," then I suppose you're right.

All human beings deserve to be treated with dignity, no matter their level of success, but it's only natural that people might be especially sensitive to people they feel an emotional bond with being disrespected.

Don't you think?

2007-10-19 13:57:39
280.   standuptriple
278 I was referring to players in general, not Joe with the coin comment.
How many more sluggish April's, house money lineups, West Coast swoons and early playoff exits do they sit through? They decided 1. Joe thought he deserved 2 (or more, it's easy to say because he knows the Yanks won't release any more comments on the negotiations, it's not their style).
2007-10-19 13:59:11
281.   Raf
270 I understood it as George being an ass. I thought at the time the "fine little family" comment was unwarranted and a bit arrogant. Managerial changes don't bother me, I've seen enough of them, but there's a certain way to do things.

276 No, they either say "thanks Joe, it's been real" or they make a reasonable offer. If the Yanks wanted him back, they would've made a better offer, or they would have negotiated after Torre turned them down.

Held a little more accountable for what? The ace blowing up twice? The nature of the game is that the right move sometimes doesn't work, and the wrong one sometimes does.

St. Joe is not untouchable, I don't know if anyone has said he was untouchable.

The team is doing whatever it takes to win. And it has. The problem is, other teams are also doing whatever it takes to win.

2007-10-19 14:02:12
282.   standuptriple
You guys act like they put up a list of people who will be with the Yanks next season and Joe's name was left off. Yes, there is an organizational change happening. Lots of things were discussed. I think they truly weighed the options of bringing Joe back, but ultimately they thought they could do better with probably a younger/hungrier/different man at the helm.
I still fail to see how he was "disrespected".
2007-10-19 14:02:49
283.   yankz
280 Those are reasons to replace him, not embarrass him by offering him a contract they didn't want him to accept.
2007-10-19 14:03:15
284.   yankz
282 Do you think the Yankees wanted Joe to accept that contract?
2007-10-19 14:04:51
285.   RIYank
280 Well, you wrote this in the same comment:

"Nobody was going to give Joe what they offered. Why should they bid against themselves?"

If you weren't saying that Torre was asking for more money, then you were certainly being misleading.

I think you're really missing the point here, but it's been said to death so if you've read the comments above and still feel that way, there's not much point in my saying more.

2007-10-19 14:06:15
286.   standuptriple
I don't think they wanted him to accept any contract, but they had to offer one. I've thought that was the plan the whole time. What's worse, thier contract offer, or not offering one at all? It seems like a catch-22.
2007-10-19 14:10:26
287.   yankz
286 I think most people here wish they had just said "Thanks for the memories, but we're changing directions" instead of trying to come across as the good guy and failing.
2007-10-19 14:11:49
288.   standuptriple
285 I think they don't want to be used as a pawn anymore to drive up the price of anybody. Cash's comments about A-Rod's opt-out and their position solidify that to me. It's part of the organizational shift. Another part is youth, which they think a different manager will be more productive as players change.
Don't get me wrong. I appreciate Joe and all he's done.
2007-10-19 14:14:44
289.   yankster
270 I agree completely. It would be nice if Torre wanted to retire at the same time the regime ($teinbrothers) wanted him to, but that kind of thing takes some tact and strong relationships - something that seems to be missing in the organization.

Part of me fantasizes (and this might have happened) that Torre should have offered something to the Yanks, like the chance to retire him with the old stadium. They could have given him $8M as a salary extension to be paid in 2014. It would have been worth the same as the $5 today - and Torre would save face. He would have said: "Give me another year with strong and full support, and I'll retire at the end of the year in a huge and positive celebration."

Hell, he could always come out of retirement for another job in a year or two.

But I think he wanted to stick it to the yankees hard and passively. Like he does when a BFOG pitcher fails - he takes the ball looks them him the eyes, shakes his head and walks away. The Torre screw you.

Isn't thirteen years enough?

2007-10-19 14:17:29
290.   Raf
285 I think the days of using the Yanks to get a better offer passed a while ago. It could be because it's late, but I can't think off the top of my head of any recent players that used the Yanks to drive up their price. I'm sure there have been, I just can't think of any right now.
2007-10-19 14:19:01
291.   standuptriple
DiceK comes to mind.
2007-10-19 14:21:23
292.   weeping for brunnhilde
282 Well, for starters, Joe himself, always so politic, admitted he was "insulted" by the incentives offer and the implication that he and/or his team somehow needed extra motivation or didn't understand that the organization's goal was a ring.

Do you get it now?

2007-10-19 14:23:32
293.   weeping for brunnhilde
283 Precisely.

I think perhaps standuptriple's misunderstanding the nature of our grievance.

The argument isn't about whether or not Joe ought to have stayed. It's about his treatment.

It's really very simple.

Another thing Joe said was that he would have preferred to have been fired outright because "Well, at least it would have been honest."

2007-10-19 14:35:51
294.   rilkefan
292 Torre feeling disrespected isn't necessarily evidence he was disrespected.

Offering him significantly more than any other manager, plus the opportunity to get still more, doesn't strike me as disrespectful. If he was clearly the best manager out there, then perhaps, but as a mostly-good-but-significantly-flawed manager I don't see it.

If the offer was take-it-or-leave-it, that's not particularly respectful - was that the case?

2007-10-19 14:39:16
295.   yankz
294 Yes, it was. The Yankees refused to negotiate with him.

For the last time, it wasn't about the money.

2007-10-19 14:39:38
296.   standuptriple
293 I don't think it's that simple though. They have so much history (let's face it the Yankees are sometimes slaves to their history) with the players and the potential replacements for him. I just think the were in a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation.
They tried to do it their way, but then Mo, Papi and a slew of other people help create an even bigger blizzard than they wanted it to be. I suppose they should have expected it. I thought there would be a lot of commentary, but not the 24/7 that I've seen. Part of the storm was due to the Yanks early exit.
2007-10-19 15:01:08
297.   weeping for brunnhilde
294 Hmmm...interesting.

Maybe we're quibbling now, but to me, disrespect is by definition subjective.

To feel disrespected is to be disrespected.

Of course, there are social rules governing this sort of thing whereby an insult in one cultural context is not one in another, etc., but the feeling of being disrespected is kind of hard to argue with, no?

Unless you think he's feigning injury for ulterior motives.

But given the fact the guy wears his heart on his sleeve and has been (basically) nothing but straight-up and plain with the public, I find that pretty implausible.

The point, in other words, is that management has to know who its actions will be perceived and received by personnel and factor that into the equation.

In this situation they either insulted him through obtuseness or deliberately; a reasonable person ought to have predicted the incentive clause would have insulted a guy like Joe.

Barring predictions, they might have consulted with people who actually know him as to his likely response.

It's not about what objectively should or should not be insulting.

2007-10-19 15:20:55
298.   Zack
297 Yes and no. It is subjective and if Joe feels he was disrespected, that should be honored. But on the other hand, as others have pointed out, that doesn't mean his sense of disrespect is justified.

I have to say, I am disagreeing with almost all of you. Yes, Torre could have had a better deal given to him or told upfront he wasn't coming back, but you know what, get over it. The Yankees have treated Joe Torre beyond well financially. And Joe Torre has, in turn, been willing to suck it up as his coaches get shown the door and had bad things leaked about him--i guess that was insulting. I really really really fail to see how this isn't about the money. Yes, he was insulted at the idea of the incentives, but if they had offered him 8 million with incentives, I would be willing to be we wouldn't be having this argument. In baseball, like most businesses, its always all about the money, period. People might say otherwise, and rarely someone makes a decision against the norm, but we are still talking about them "settling" for millions. If the Yankees had offered Joe a larger contract and a 2nd year, he'd be back, taking his lumps from George and watching Guidry bid adieu.

We can all be upset that Joe didn't get a better sendoff, but he has a lot to do with that too. The notion that the Yankees owe him something seems to me to be absurd, they've already given him a lot. He wants more. Fine, both sides didn't come to an agreement, they move on. But Torre basically sold out the Yankee organization today too, which is pretty crappy as well.

I have lots of respect for Torre. But I'm also a Yankees fan and my loyalty is to the team. So I am finding it hard to gnash my teeth over this. I'm sorry Joe is insulted as I am sorry Bernie was too, but it is a business, and Joe knows that more than anyone else.

On another note, I think Pete Abe has gone off the deep end...

2007-10-19 15:30:17
299.   yankz
Why is everybody getting so excited about all the money saved if Posada, Mo, and Arod walk? First, since when do the Yankees need to save money? And more importantly, saved money is only exciting because now there's money to spend.

Except you just lost your two best hitters and your best reliever. There is nobody- yeah, really, nobody- in the farm to replace Arod or Jorge. And Rivera's replacement would be Farnsworth- or worse, Joba.

Guess what? That money would have to be spent on free agents to plug the massive holes left. Except no free agent out there is as good as what we have.

Unless you're fine with Betemit and Molina getting 650 AB, of course. Then I guess you can use that saved money on the new stadium, or maybe give it to Randy Levine.

2007-10-19 15:38:32
300.   Zack
299 I'm less excited about the free $ than the dead weight. Like it or not, there is nothing that says Posada is going to be any good next year, let alone beyond. Ditto Mo. I fully expect them to sign, and yes, without them, the Yankees will be worse. But they might be better off for it in the end. A-Rod is another story. The Yankees can probably make up for Posada's bat with a combo of Giambi/Duncan/Betimet all season (that is, no stink) and the like, but A-Rod's offense they simply can't match.

As for the $, I see it as this: Even the Yankees have a ceiling. And its showed. They've hit it. They need to cut payroll and drop their dead weight. Having a whole lot of young players is really great and cheap, but what is better is to have the flexibility and $ to sign those players to long term contracts as well as be able to add the pieces you need in free agency/trades.

If Posada/Rivera leverage this against the Yankees, a) thats a pretty shitty thing to do and makes them look as bad as the Yankees (at least as bad as you see them), and b) let them walk if they are that insistent on lots of years and $, since Posada and Mo in three years from now might be a really ugly sight...

Show/Hide Comments 301-350
2007-10-19 15:46:26
301.   yankz
300 "I'm less excited about the free $ than the dead weight. Like it or not, there is nothing that says Posada is going to be any good next year, let alone beyond. Ditto Mo."

Seriously, there is NOBODY else. Not even another FA. Posada and Mo were outstanding and good this year, respectively. I see no reason why they can't be good and good this year. Better to overpay and relegate them to BUC/DH and above-average setup guy in 2010 than take a massive hit 2008 and 2009. Should the Yankees be held hostage? No, of course not. But the idea that saving money is inherently a good thing doesn't apply here. You would have to spend that money on somebody else. And that somebody won't be as good.

2007-10-19 15:47:49
302.   thelarmis
forgive me if these new Andy quotes have already been posted...

"I love Joe Torre to death," Pettitte told Houston's KRIV-TV on Friday. "He meant the world to me. I hate that he's not going to be the manager.

"I have a big decision to make if I want to play again next year. I figured I would give myself a month to make the decision."

2007-10-19 15:50:22
303.   yankz
New thread...
2007-10-19 15:51:24
304.   Adrian
298 I sort of see your point, but saying baseball is all about the money is sort of like saying politics is all about the money. It captures an important point but is also reductive and therefore misses out on a lot of complexities. A little reductio ad absurdum: Torre gets a 2-year, 500k contract, but has to blow Randy Levine live on ESPN. According to your theory, he takes that deal.

Torre's an old man (67) with a lot of accomplishments under his belt. Given his age and resume I can see why that offer was insulting. When you're one of the top 10 managers in baseball history, being given a perfunctory agreement in bad faith (no attempt to negotiate) with terms that can -- and have been -- perceived to denigrate your understanding of the duties and expectations of your position with no future commitment to you (1 year contract) IS INSULTING.

When you're as old and rich as JT, money has less value than dignity. He doesn't need the money, but the perception being disrespected by a bunch of kids younger than you who you don't have a history with (as you do with the Boss) and Randy f'ing Levine would probably hurt his ability to do his job. All of this "it's about the MOOLAH" talk ignores the true baseline of this situation: it's about Joe Torre.

And, as armchair-psychological as this post has been, I think it's important to point out that Joe comes from a different generation. The values of a New York Italian learned growing up in the 50's are a lot different than those that I grew up with. I think that, to a certain extent, this contention is backed up by his public demeanor and, ultimately, his decision not to take this contract.

2007-10-19 15:57:33
305.   OldYanksFan
119 Nice to hear a clean, clear emotional thought, without any couldofs, shouldofs bullshit.

An important and historic member of my Yankee family is gone, and in an ugly way. The players are bummed. The coaches are bummed. Players who would have re-signed for the correct dollar amount may now leave.

The horrible, Yankee in-house dysfunctional voice that was quiet for so long, may be back. Francona is shocked and saddened. Eric Wedge applauded Torre for turning down the offer. There is real turmoil in the house for the first time in a long time.

Through injuries, Giambi Steroids, Shefmouth, ARod blonds and many other distractions, Torre maintained calm and grace for 12 years. The waters were smooth.

Yes... Torre was going at some point. But does anyone feel his exit was heralded with grace? With class? Over the next few weeks we will see if our ship has some more leaks, or even some gaping holes. I can't speculate on the next manager because it is small potatos compared to the MoPoARodAndy issue. It is small potatos if we have traded a Big Stein for a slightly smaller Stein. A horse breeder may now be calling the shots.

I will simply hold my breath until this sorts out and hope to God that this team doesn't unravel.

I will hope that the small percentage chance that a new manager actually does better comes true. I will hope that the greater chance of very real and serious problems happening doesn't.

And I will mourn Torre as a great loss. Not because of wins and loses, but because of how he ushered in and maintained a new era for the Yankees. For how he commanded the respect of everyone who knew him, and by association brought respect back to the Yankees. For how Tim Wakefield said that he is saddened because he always wanted to play for Torre because he heard from other players (including JD) that Torre was the best. For touching Rogers cheek, for sending Paulie home to be with his sick dad, for resting Bobby against a tough lefthander to keep his confidence going. For keeping his cool when we lost, and crying when we won.

I simply don't get that there are some here who are too busy being right, to feel, acknowledge and honor this loss.

Like this year, when we lost in the PS, there was always next year. But now, not for Joe. Aside for the sudden loss of Thurman, I can't think of a sadder moment to be a Yankee fan.

2007-10-19 16:03:21
306.   OldYanksFan
3127 people have voted.
2007-10-19 16:07:05
307.   rilkefan
305 The waters weren't smooth last year after Torre threw A-Rod over the side.

Even if one thinks that Torre was offered a disrespectful deal, shouldn't one consider that it would have been better for the team for him to have said that he appreciated the offer and urged the FA class to resign despite his departure?

2007-10-19 16:08:26
308.   Adrian
Also, I think it's telling that Torre went to Tampa in person to meet these people. All the public sentiments aside, I think he heard about the contract from Ca$hman and felt that his decision depended on reading the people who were offering it. He went, he took the temperature of the meeting (decidedly chilly) and turned down the offer. They didn't offer back and he had his answer. I'm in agreement with 305 .
2007-10-19 17:11:07
309.   JL25and3
298 Zack, if it were only about the money, Torre would have taken the deal - because the plain fact is, it's his only chance to earn that much. Whether he takes another managing job or a broadcasting gig, there's no way he's making $5M.

I'm not saying the money is irrelevant. Sure, if it had been $8M plus incentives, Joe would have signed - even for one year. But what they offered him was, Prove yourself all over again if you want to earn last year's salary - and that after two weeks of hemming and hawing. I don't think it's just that Joe perceived it as an insult; I think it was fully intended that way.

2007-10-19 17:13:32
310.   JL25and3
307 Why should he? He doesn't owe a damn thing to the team now. Hell, he might be managing against them next year.
2007-10-19 17:32:59
311.   Dimelo
305 My sentiments exactly. Great job!!!

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