Joe Says It Ain't So

aabp015joe-torre-2000-world-series-celebration-photofile-posters.jpgOn Thursday afternoon the New York Yankees took their first step in a new direction. A 4pm conference call was announced and the Yankees Team President Randy Levine spoke. He offically announced that Joe Torre rejected the Yankees offer of a 1-year $5 million offer with a $1 million bonus for every round of the postseason he reached. It marked an end of an era and it was the beginning of something new.

You can argue that this was a move the Yankees should've made a year or two earlier but ask most Yankee fans and they'd tell you they'd prob prefer Torre as the manager. Who else can replace the man that brought back prestige and respectability to the pinstripes? He made Yankee Stadium the place to be the last 12 years. He instilled fear and imtimidation in the opposition. Or was that something the Yankee players did themselves? It was a combination of both, and that's what made it work. That's what got the Yankees 4 world championships in Torre's first 5 years. The unity between the team and it's manager.

Torre became a household name in New York. He was an icon. The same way we knew why Derek Jeter was a superstar, was the same reason we loved Joe...he won so much and won so often. So popular that his decision to reject the Yankees offer for 2008 had all the network news lead off with the story, helicopters hover over his plane arriving in New York Thursday, have a mass media frenzy in front of his house, and front and back pages of all the local newspapers. A key to Torre's success was his trust and loyalty to his players. It's one of the reasons why players like Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera,and Jorge Posada love him so much. Ironically these 3 might also be on the way out as they are all free agents at season's end.

"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.

torre-straw.jpgRivera told reporters a week ago that his status might be determined on if Torre was back next year as the manager of the Yankees. Posada also hinted at the notion the fate of the manager might affect where his plays next season.

Joe Torre has been nothing but class and eligence since his arrival in November of 1995. No one knew him back then, now everyone in New York knows who he is. Some of us grew up only knowing Torre as the Yankees manager. Some of us have only seen world championships the way Joe has seen them, '96,'98-2000. For me as a fan he made me want to bleed Yankee pinstripes. He gained my trust, he gained my confidence and he gained my loyalty, as I'm sure he did with millions of people who followed the Yanks the last 12 years. I truly believed Torre would make the right decision in the most cruical spots. And most of the time he did. It was impossible for him to be perfect but he was close to it.

Via Mike Lupica NY Daily News:
If this sticks, it was the end of Torre's Yankees and everything they have meant and everything they have been. And it was the end of George Steinbrenner's Yankees, just because nobody will ever believe he is really calling the shots there ever again.

It was the end of all that. It's almost as if Torre and Steinbrenner leave the Yankees together.

The Yankees will win again someday, maybe as soon as next season, with another manager. There is still too much talent around and too much money to spend, and everybody can see they have a farm system again, and young arms. So this wasn't the end of the Yankees. Just the end of what they have been under Torre.
yankeesx.jpgIt's true he hasn't won it all in 7 years but the job he has done over the last few years has shown his worth. The days of the (11-19) 2005 Yanks, the (21-29) 2007 Yanks are some of those examples. He once shipped out slugger Ruben Sierra because Sierra had a "me"-first attittude and that's not what Torre stood for. Sierra came back and was a new man and had a new "team"-first attitude. Darryl Strawberry once said Torre was like a father to him. Jeter likes to call him "Mr. Torre"..a show of respect and admiration. Now, after 12 years Joe Torre is gone and no longer the manager of the New York Yankees. He was poorly treated and disrespected in his final days as manager. Where was the loyalty for Torre? How could you let a man that brought you so much success dangle and be tossed around like that? Where was the class of the Yankees brass? I agree with Joe, if they wanted him to manage the Yankees next year, then he would be the manager. I am disgusted by the way the Yankees handled Torre and the way they've done business this year. The way they handled Bernie Williams and now Torre. At this rate Pettitte, Posada and might want to start packing your bags, these aren't Torre's Yankees anymore and that could be a start of a long way down from grace..and the Yankees took their first step.
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