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According to the occasionally-reputable New York Daily News, Joe Torre is about to be removed, by his choice of resigning or being fired, as manager of the Yankees. This would not be the first in a series of off-season managerial changes, but would certainly be the most noteworthy so far. Reportedly, Lou Piniella would return for another go-round as manager in the Bronx.

So, if this is in fact what happens, what does that mean ...

... for the Yankees? For the AL East? For Torre?


Torre Out in Bronx? | 25 comments | Create New Account
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Jordan - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 05:58 PM EDT (#156776) #
For the Yankees, it would mean the start of the serious renewal of the franchise. The Yankees have been running largely on momentum, experience and reputation the last few years, but the ever-accelerating payroll avalanche has obscured the rust that has undermined the core of the team. Allowing Torre to resign would signal the official end of the late 1990s New York dynasty; it would coincide with Bernie Williams' retirement and give a truly great team its chance to bow out as gracefully as circumstances allow.

Hiring Piniella would be the wrong move, unless it's a purely stopgap and PR measure. The Yankees need to start all over again, rebuild their pitching and look realistically at all the twlight-stage HOFers on the roster. The first and easiest step would be trading Alex Rodriguez and paying as much of his salary as possible, picking up a passel of young pitching and position players in return. The front office should envision the 2009 Yankees, which should have Derek Jeter at third base, Robinson Cano at short, and no other member of the 2006 lineup in the organization. It's time to quit trying to refit the current model and go get a new one.

For the AL East, Torre's departure and the re-engineering that it will signal is not good news. The Yankees still have $200M to spend on the 25-man roster, a pretty smart GM in Brian Cashman, and a supposedly limp farm system that keeps producing All-Stars. The only saving grace for the division lately has been Steinbrenner's inability to let the glory days go; if he's ready to start finding new glory days, everyone else should be worried. I don't see any way to beat a $200 million roster assembled by smart baseball people.

For Torre, he should get his Cooperstown speech ready and otherwise get his health back; he looked absolutely terrible in the dugout that last game against the Tigers. He deserves some down time.
King Ryan - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 06:58 PM EDT (#156779) #
I couldn't disagree more with Jordan.

The 2006 New York Yankees were an excellent team, and four games against the Tigers doesn't / shouldn't change that.  I anticipate they will let go of only Sheffield, bring in another SP or two, and get ready for another 100-win season next year.

Mike Green - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 09:09 PM EDT (#156781) #
I'm with King Ryan.  The Yankees are in excellent shape, much better than they were 2 or 3 years ago.  Cashman has had his ups and downs over his time with the Yankees, but they were the best club in the majors this season and Cashman's acumen in acquiring Damon, Abreu and Wilson played a part.  With the arrival of Cano, Cabrera and Wang, and their budget, rebuilding is entirely unnecessary. 
Lefty - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 09:35 PM EDT (#156783) #

Does Cashman get a pass on his pitching staff  and an early boot because his owner had the willingness to buy Damon, Abreu and Wilson? I mean is that so much acumen or just bellying up to the bar?

Personally I'd say he appears to be getting away scot free.

However, I would agree that they do appear to be in excellent shape for years to come in terms of resources being freed up in Sheffield, the retirement of Bernie Williams and the development of some of the younger players mentioned.

But if everythings ok in Yankeevillle, why is it Torre rumoured to be going?

Mike Green - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 10:03 PM EDT (#156784) #
The Wilson deal involved no significant cash.  The Damon deal met a basic need at an essentially fair price.  The Abreu deadline deal was, if I understand the financial arrangements correctly, relatively favourable to the Yankees.

Wang, Mussina, Johnson and Wright, and a pretty good bullpen would normally have been enough.  They just weren't in a short series, but the Yankee bats, which were easily the best of the year and probably the decade and perhaps in many decades, simply did not produce.  Beane had it right. 

Anders - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 10:10 PM EDT (#156785) #
Robinson Cano at short

Have you seen Cano try to play second? He booted or just plain missed 3 balls in the division series. It's painful.
I have to say, blowing up the Yankees would be both a bad and dumb idea. They were the best team in baseball this year. They have a couple of old guys who need to be put out to pasture - Bernie, the Unit and to a lesser extent Moose. They could trade A-Rod, sign Aramis Ramirez, get prospects, save money and be a better team.

They have to be the favourites to win the Series going into next you.
Gerry - Sunday, October 08 2006 @ 11:01 PM EDT (#156786) #
The Yankees can lose a short series when they "go cold".  Unfortunately for the Jays the law of averages works better over 162 games where the hot and cold spells even out and the better team generally wins.
Jordan - Monday, October 09 2006 @ 09:27 AM EDT (#156790) #
The 2006 New York Yankees were an excellent team

Two things. First, the Yankees were an excellent team in the regular season; in the playoffs they were a bust, and the pitching staff was the main reason. Even if their bats had come around, they were starting the carcass of Randy Johnson and the remains of Jaret Wright in must-win games. The Yankees aren't built to win 100 games; they're built to win the World Series, and they haven't accomplished that. That's why Torre's going now and Cashman may go later.

Second, the Yankees' problem recently has been constantly looking back to the previous year's team and thinking, "That was a good team; all we need to do is tinker with that (i.e., add another big name or big contract) and we're back in the Series." That hasn't worked for five years running and it's not going to work if they try it next year. "Pick up a couple of SPs"? Who, precisely? Greg Maddux? Roger Clemens? Ted Lilly? The Yankees' best and only reliable playoff pitcher was the one guy who came up through the system. That's not just not a coincidence; it's an omen.

This is a tired team -- they remind me of the 1992 Oakand A's that the Jays pushed aside in the ALCS -- big names, big egos, hanging on one year too long. Next season, Giambi will be 36, Posada 35, Abreu, Damon and Matsui 33 -- who thinks they're all going to be better (or even as good) in 2007 ads they were in 2006? I sincerely hope Steinbrenner does, because the Jays' chance of contention will be that much greater. I hope the Yankees return the core of this team next season.
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