What is Joe Torre thinking? Even if he felt Rodriguez was out of line–and for the sake of full disclosure, I don’t think he was–why is Torre saying it to the press?
“They were angry,” Torre said. “Oh, there’s no question. I can’t say I blame them, but what are you going to do about it? What’s happened has happened.”
Torre said he spoke with Rodriguez after the game.
“It’s probably something he shouldn’t have done,” Torre said. “I don’t sense he’s going to do it again.”
Torre didn’t explicitly tell Rodriguez not to do it, and Rodriguez didn’t say he wouldn’t, according to the manager, but it was clear to Torre there will be no repeat.
Understand, I like Joe Torre. I always have. But there is something about this situation that doesn’t smell right. Torre has always been marvelous at keeping the New York press at arms length from his players. So why is he throwing A-Rod under the bus here? What possible purpose does his comments serve? And notice the chicanery in the last paragraph. If Torre felt strongly enough about it to blab to the press, why didn’t he instruct A-Rod not to do it? He is the manager, isn’t he?
Undercutting your most productive player (where would the Yankees be without Rodriguez’ April) in the press for doing something, anything to win–no matter how bush league–is not good management. And that is the best case scenario. I’m wondering whether this episode reveals deeper issues in the clubhouse, something which could explain the Yankees dismal start.
Maybe it is time for Torre to go. And like I said, I like Joe.
— Michael Norton