Report: Torre to be dismissed

Report: Torre to be dismissed

NEW YORK -- Joe Torre's days as the manager of the Yankees appear to be numbered, according to a report in Sunday's Daily News.

The front-page headline of one edition of the newspaper proclaims "Outta Here" with a photo of Torre, whose Yankees were eliminated in the Division Series on Saturday by the Tigers in Detroit.

The final edition features a wraparound headline that reads "In & Out" with photos of Mets manager Willie Randolph spraying champagne on one side and a grimacing Torre on the other.

Following Saturday's loss, general manager Brian Cashman was asked about Torre's status for 2007, and he replied that Torre would return for his 12th season in the Bronx.

He then added, "Obviously, I have people above me. But the question came to me, and I'm answering it as I see it."

The newspaper reports that the 66-year-old Torre is expected to be dismissed after the Yankees' latest playoff disaster, with former Yankees player and manager Lou Piniella his likely replacement.

"We felt pretty good about ourselves," Torre said after Saturday's loss. "But again, that's something for [Cashman] and I and other people to talk about.

"But right now, it's just ..." Torre added, choking back tears, "it's just tough."

Torre has led the Yankees to the postseason in each of his 11 seasons as manager, winning 10 American League East titles. Torre's teams have won four World Series titles and captured two more AL pennants, but six consecutive seasons without a championship may be too much for Torre to overcome.

"It's very frustrating, because we've had teams that have been capable of going all the way," said Bernie Williams, who, along with Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera, has been with Torre for his entire tenure. "We've still got to give credit to the opposition."

Shortly after Saturday's loss, one veteran Yankee was caught off-guard when asked about the possibility of Torre being let go as a result of the latest playoff exit.

"Why would that ever happen?" said the player, who asked not to be identified. "This wasn't Joe's fault. He wasn't up there hitting. What was he supposed to do?"

"That's pretty drastic; Joe has been awesome," Johnny Damon told MLB.com after Saturday's loss. "You never know what's going to happen, but I think Joe should be safe. For all he's done and had to put up with, he's been incredible."

Torre was hired in November 1995, replacing Buck Showalter following the team's first trip to the postseason in 14 years. One New York tabloid blasted the headline "Clueless Joe" on the back page, questioning the decision to hire the manager whose career record at the time was 109 games under .500.

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The Yankees won the World Series in Torre's first season, snapping an 18-year championship drought. Two years later, Torre led the Bombers to a second title, and there would be two more after that in 1999 and 2000.

Torre's Yankees returned to the Fall Classic in 2001, but the four-peat was not meant to be, as the Diamondbacks rallied for two runs in the ninth inning against Rivera to steal the World Series away from New York.

In 2002, the Yankees were ousted in the Division Series, losing to the Angels in four games. New York rebounded the next season, outlasting the Red Sox in a classic, seven-game ALCS which ended on Aaron Boone's memorable walk-off home run. But that series seemed to drain the Yankees, who lost the Fall Classic to the Marlins in six games.

The 2004 season saw the Yankees collect their seventh straight division title, but after defeating the Twins in the ALDS and taking a 3-0 lead in the ALCS against the Red Sox, the Yankees suffered the worst collapse in baseball history, dropping four consecutive games to Boston, as the Sox went on to snap their 86-year World Series curse.

Last season, the Yankees won the AL East for an eighth straight year, but they fell victim to the Angels for the second time in four years, losing a five-game ALDS for another early exit.

This week, Torre's Yankees won Game 1 of the ALDS against the Tigers, and most people expected New York to cruise into the AL Championship Series. But Detroit pitched its way to three straight wins, as Torre mixed and matched his lineup without any success.

"We just haven't put it together," said Jason Giambi, who has been on the last five Yankees teams. "All those years that those teams won, that's what makes what they did that special. It's not as easy as everybody thinks. It's not guaranteed."

If Torre's tenure in New York is over, he leaves with a 1,079-699 record with the Yankees, ranking third on the club's all-time list. Torre guided the Yanks to four 100-win seasons, including three in a row from 2002-04, and he captured two AL Manager of the Year awards.

From 1996-2000, Torre tied Casey Stengel for the most wins by a Yankees manager in his first five seasons with 487 victories.

Torre's 11 postseason appearances ranks first in AL history, while his 75 postseason victories are the most by any manager.

Torre's 1,973 victories with the Mets, Braves, Cardinals and Yankees ranks 10th on the all-time managerial wins list.

Mark Feinsand is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.