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Torre's departure from the Yankees was anything short of pleasant.
The hiring of Joe Torre by George Steinbrenner before the 1996 season was one of great concern for Yankee fans everywhere. He had never succeeded on the highest level before, so how could he lead the Yankees to a World Series? That doubt was put to rest immediately.
Using a vast amount of baseball knowledge and an ability to relate with players very well, Torre quickly solidified a Hall of Fame managerial campaign with the Yankees, winning four World Series in his first five seasons with the team.
His moves with pitchers, players, and pinch-hitters were incredibly good at just the right time, seemingly every time. He was loved by the crowd and most of his teams.
Behind the scenes, however, his relationship was up-and-down with management. In a book released after his Yankees' career was over named "The Yankee Years," Torre and author Tom Verducci explained the strains between the manager, Steinbrenner and his brain trust, and general manager Brian Cashman.
When the Yankees didn't win by 2005 and 2006, it was even in question if Torre would return. Every season, he would torment with ownership until they finally let him know the job was his again.
After a disappointing 2007 season ending with midges surrounding Joba Chamberlain in Cleveland, Torre thought his job could be in jeopardy, but decided to meet with Yankees' brass to discuss it.
The meeting did not take long, as Torre asked for guaranteed years and money, and the organization wanted nothing to do with that.
Cashman, who had vouched for Torre many times but did not put full trust in him near the last part of their relationship together, moved on from Torre, signing Joe Girardi instead. Torre moved on to the Los Angeles Dodgers, where he managed a less-talented team to two NLCS rounds in three years.
To say the Yankees lack of winning during the last decade under Torre was his fault is hard to say. Management's obsession with overpaid, aging players with fragile psyches made managing difficult.
Nevertheless, his lack of success lost him trust in the organization, and therefore his dismissal was more tragic than celebrated. It took him until the 2011 Old Timer's Day for Torre to return to Yankee land. He was cheered, but it's a shame he ever left.