Did you ever feel sorry for the school yard bully?

The Yankees record after losing 2 out of 3 games to the Red Sox in the Bronx now sits at 9 and 14, 6.5 games out of first place in the AL East. The talk is that manager Joe Torre could be fired. Turmoil has struck early in New York this season, and while I hate the Red Sox I find myself sitting here and having a hard time feeling bad for the New York Yankees, my buddy George’s favorite team.

They’re talking about getting rid of Joe Torre. That’s a stupid move and I’ll go ahead and say it now, it’s not gonna happen. The guy is one of the greatest managers of all time. Like the veterans on that ballclub have said many times already, it’s not like he can get out on the field and hit for them, or go out to the mound and pitch for them. It comes down to performance by the players on the field and the bottom line is they are not getting it done. This is no fault of Torre’s. I believe that the report leaked that Torre could lose his job simply to light a fire under the team’s ass, as per usual when that happens in the Bronx. I’m sure Torre has heard the same rumors before, actually I know he has. This distance that seperates the Yankees from playoff baseball is not insurmountable and it’s forseeable that they could go on a run very, very soon. It’s not Torre’s fault that Mussina, Pavano and Wang all spent significant time on the DL early this season causing the Yanks to have to throw two unproven rookies in the rotation and they’ve been depending on Kei Igawa, another unprovent talent at the Major League level.

The Yankees always had my respect as an organization even if I didn’t like them because they signify what class is as a sports franchise or organization. If they decide to fire Joe Torre or let these rumors continue, they’ll lose my respect completely. The fact that Steinbrenner hasn’t came out yet and said that the speculation in reference to Torre’s job was just that; speculation, really has me saying ‘fuck it’ with this team. The guy’s been good enought to take your teams to the top since what, 1996? Now you’re gonna let him go because of a start that has you 5 games under .500 in the season’s first month? I don’t think so. I’m not stupid enough to buy it and this is one thing I don’t see Steinbrenner buying either. It’s another chicken shit ploy by the owner to get this team to play better. Now that A-Rod is coming into his own in pinstripes, you have to find some scapegoat right? Who better than the poor, mellow-minded manager?

The Yankees will finish off April 2007 in last place for the first time in modern history it seems. Still, I find it hard to feel bad for them because of this. This happens to every team every now and then. It’s inconceivable to think that the Yanks are never going to have a month to open the season in which they don’t find themselves atop the AL East standings. If I’m Joe Torre, I strut slowly (as he does to the mound) into the owners office with a big grin on my face and tell him to grow a pair of balls, and either let me know I’m gonna be here to weather the storm, or tell him to make the move right now. Who are you gonna find to replace the legendary Torre? Who are you gonna bring in that is a better fit not only long term, but short term? Joe Girardi? Please. Compared to Torre’s Godfather-like presence over the Yankee clubhouse, Girardi couldn’t manager his way out of a wet-paper sack. How about Don Mattingly? Once again, no experience as a big league manager. Someone who is raw isn’t going to like managing all those veterans so close to them in age. This locker room and clubhouse needs Torre as bad as he needs them if not worse.

The Yankees are going to come out of this fine, just like every year. Sinatra is gonna be played another 85 to 90 times in the Bronx and they’re gonna find a way to catch the Red Sox. If you’re a baseball fan you know they’re not gonna continue this and lay down and die. Other teams better watch out, and if I’m an opposing big league team I want nothing to do with these guys because they’re gonna get their wins–the wins are still coming, it’s just a matter of who will it be against. This team’s got some runs left in all those veterans, plus we all know about the ‘ghosts’ that lurk at Yankee Stadium when it gets late.

I’m just a bit shocked and disgusted that a ‘class’ organization would stoop to such levels to get the result of a few victories, especially in a meaningless weekend series in April.