November 01, 2007

Torre Moves to the Left Coast

Well, it's a done deal. Joe "Brooklyn Born" Torre has accepted a 3-year deal with the Dodgers, reportedly at $15 mil with some incentives (sound familiar?). Joe has always struck me as a class individual, even though he managed the hated Yanks for the past 12 years. He will always be the guy who wore that Mets' satin jacket, the one that I just had to have, and saved for six months to buy (and, believe it or not, some 28 years later, that same jacket is the property of Jonathan's son!) Living in Los Angeles, I can tell you that Torre's hiring will be very well-received, as La-La Land loves larger-than-life personalities, a la Tom Lasorda, and Torre, like the Dodgers, originated in Brooklyn and will celebrate the Bums' 50th year in Los Angeles this year. Don Mattingly and Lee Mazzilli are rumored to be following Joe close behind, and if the Mets don't get into the A-Rod derby, I am sure Boras will be pushing him on McCourt, Colletti and Torre, hard and fast.

This will really be a test for Joe's people-skills, as he is inheriting a team in major transition. One-half of the team is made up of young prospects, such as James Loney, Matt Kemp and Chad Billingsley, who have had some success in the bigs but haven't yet had 2-3 seasons in the show to see if their potential will translate into major league results. On the other hand, the roster is laden with old veterans, a la Jeff Kent, Rafael Furcal, Juan Pierre and NO-Mah, and no one knows what can be expected of them next year. In the middle are a few, really talented players, like pitchers Brad Penny and Derek Lowe, but the one thing this team is missing is star power, something Joe certainly brings. However, he can no longer field, hit or run, and could never pitch, so unless Colletti brings him some top talent fast, and agrees to trade some of his minor league talent for some major league stars, Joe and company are in for a very long year.

At any rate, this off-season just formally got a whole lot more interesting...


Anonymous said...

now everyone will remember that torre was a bad manager before he fell into a good spot with the yanks and will now be a bad manager again

Anonymous said...