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Sunday, September 19, 2010

Joe Torre ought to stay far away from George Steinbrenner ceremony

Just heard that Joe Torre and Don Mattingly reportedly will be attending Monday's Yankee Stadium ceremony to honor George Steinbrenner with a monument in Monument Park. Donnie Baseball will be a welcome face at the ballpark. Joe Torre, not so much, at least for me.

I'm not about to let bygones be bygones and welcome Torre back to the ballpark with open arms.  Not when he has never apologized for the way he bit the hand that fed him for twelve years. Not as long as the vile "Yankee Years" book remains in print, where he trashed The Boss when he was unable to defend himself. And certainly not after Torre and his wife Ali compared Steinbrenner, the man of honor tomorrow night, to Torre's own abusive father, the monster who threw Torre's mother down the stairs when he found out she was pregnant with Joe Jr.

What a phony Torre is to even have the nerve to show up in the first place. He's going to "honor" Steinbrenner's memory with his presence, right? Spare me the sanctimony. Just by showing up, Loe will make the evening all about him. If Torre were as classy as his PR machine claims, he would stay away, and not make a mockery of the night.

I remember how Joe and Ali Torre "honored" Steinbrenner back in November, after the Yankees won the World Series. They had an interview with T.J. Simers of the Los Angeles Times, where, as I noted in a Faster Times piece, they described Steinbrenner this way:
“George was such a domineering figure in Joe’s life and his father was like that,” says Ali Torre.

Joe Torre backed that comment up, saying about his experience as Yankee manager, “That was a big part of it with George too. I don’t know how many times I told George, ‘The only thing I wanted to do was make you feel proud of what I’ve done.'"

Columnist Simers didn’t raise his eyebrows at these accusations. Instead he agreed, writing, “The abused going full circle, five times as likely to become the abuser, the experts say, or become abused again. Or go to work for Steinbrenner.”
Torre's wife used that analogy again in another part of the interview:
Ali Torre told her husband and Simers, “The parallel was very similar to what you had with your father. Some of the people in the Yankee organization were bullying you and not treating you with respect all along. You kept trying to survive until you got worn down.”
Comparing domestic violence to the travails of the highest-paid manager in baseball history? Oh please.

It's funny. Torre constantly accused Alex Rodriguez of hogging the spotlight, and making everything all about him. Guess it takes one to know one.

What do you think? Tell us about it!

8 comments:

Jimmy said...

You're out of your mind! After all Joe Torre has done for us Yankee fans, you got a lot of balls saying something as stupid as you said. So do you think Reggie Jackson and Yogi Berra shouldn't show up either?? I mean if you take every Yankee out of the ceremony who's ever had a beef with George then there wouldn't be anyone there!

RockN'RollStreetRat said...

George was no saint either. Tomorrow's ceremony should be about Steinbrenner's baseball legacy with the Yankees, not about any personal squabbles anyone had with Geroge, or that George had with anyone. And when it comes to Torre, he's one of he most important figures in the Boss's Yankee legacy, and one of the team's best ever managers. It wouldn't be diff if he wasn't there.

Subway Squawkers said...

The problem with Torre showing up is that it immediately becomes about Saint Joe Coming Back to the Bronx instead of George Steinbrenner Getting His Monument.
And don't think Torre isn't going to milk his moment back in the Bronx for everything he can out of it.

Subway Squawkers said...

And as the "after all Joe Torre has done for us Yankee fans," comment George Steinbrenner's money turned Torre from a failed manager to a legend. And how did Torre repay him? By taking potshots at The Boss when he wasn't mentally able to defend himself. At least Reggie, Yogi et al had fair fights with George.

Jonmouk71 said...

Comparing George to Torre, Sr. was a bit out of line. But Joe and Ali were very angry at the Yankees and how it all ended, and all of us say things that are over the top at those times. That being said, it is a bit hypocritical that Joe chooses to come (wonder if Zimmer will show, since he works for the Rays, but never made up with George) tomorrow but it is to honor George. That he does come to honor George probably is closer to his true feelings. The more cynical might say he is cultivating the media to pressure Wilpon to meet his high price to manage the Mets.

Subway Squawkers said...

Jonmouk71 writes:

"The more cynical might say he is cultivating the media to pressure Wilpon to meet his high price to manage the Mets."

Gee, ya think? ;) Now the timing of his Dodgers "retirement" announcement makes a lot more sense.

Jonmouk71 said...

The Wilpons and the Mets need Joe badly; the team will not be much better next year (too many bad contracts) and they won't give the job to Backman (he's not ready like Dent wasn't ready for the Yankees after Dallas Green).

Uncle Mike said...

Lisa, this has to stop. While it's true that, without George Steinbrenner, Joe Torre would be a ballplayer just short of the Hall of Fame and a manager just short of greatness (he did, after all, manage the Braves to a Division title well before that became common), without Torre, Steinbrenner would have lived the last 32 years of his life without winning another World Series.

Joe needed George to lift him to greatness. George needed Joe to restore his self-fouled reputation.

Joe not showing up at George's monument dedication would have been like Ed McMahon not going to Johnny Carson's funeral.

Considering the way George treated a lot of people over the years, it is wrong, completely wrong, to criticize Joe for, there's no other way to put it, defending himself. Keeping Joe away wouldn't make your point, it would make the George-haters' point.

Tonight's ceremony is a way for Yankee Fans to say "Thank you" -- to both men. And it is more due to Joe Torre than to anybody else -- even Gene Michael, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera -- that we can now say "Thank you" to George, with both his conscience and ours clean.