In a perfect, imaginary universe, Joe Torre would just go off today. His press conference, which is starting any minute now, will most likely feature Torre looking bemused and tired, giving "his side" of the story.
He will be classy, measured, mature and totally no fun. We'd love to see him lose his mind, start railing about how Steinbrenner soils himself, how his kids are morons, how Brian Cashman once killed a hooker just to watch her die. We'd love to see him let go of all his frustrations after a decade of being jerked around and emerging, somehow, victorious as the most popular Yankees of them all.
He won't do this, of course, but it's fun to play pretend.
To see what he actually does, we invite you to join The Assimilated Negro with a fun live-blog of Torre's press conference, which begins after the jump. We hope TAN can adequately describe the sensation of watching a man unburden himself by stripping off his clothing and jumping in the Hudson River.
3:11. Thanks everyone who actually read this through. We should get drinks and share in the pain. It was a pretty boring press conference as far as boring press conferences go. What I tried to do was convey that boredom through my use of words and punctuation marks; I can only hope I was successful. See you next time when ARod takes out the trash. Cheers!
3:10. IT'S OVER!!! Praise Steinbrenner!
3:09. Breaking: Joe Torre isn't going back to the locker. He's already done that.
3:06. Black people do this. White people do that. It's funny cause it's true.
3:02. The questions are taking longer to come. And they haven't changed since the first 15 minutes. Joe is hungrily scanning the audience for participation though. He's also identifying everyone personally now and having a chuckle before the questions. He definitely loves press conferences. On the other hand, I'm never going to watch another one again. I never thought I'd be longing for a Dane Cook commercial ... but ...
3:00. I hate to tell you this, but there are still people asking questions....
2:56. Joe Torre's fussing over $5-$7M, and ARod is wondering if he can get $400M. That's kind of funny. Right? Work with me please. Instead of Jeter, maybe Arod should just come and buy everyone at the press conference and put them in a big house and just play with them for a year. Maybe start a reality show? And a network built around that reality show. I volunteer to do a live blog on the launch of the blog about that show. Should be fun! Oh, that's what we need. More exclamation points!!
2:54. Might as well get some of these commercials out the way: The Lean on Me reference was sponsored by Black History Month Is Every Month Coalition. We thank you for your patronage.
2:52. Joe Torre just blinked. He's losing his hair also. Live on the television. Don't worry I'm capturing every titillating moment for you. This is a great time!
2:50. Joe Torre just made some jokes about his wife being bored with him in the house, or something like that. We're at that point in the press conference, it's like small talk jokes amongst Torre and his beat writer buddies. Please someone do something newsworthy. Like find George Steinbrenner's body.
2:47. We're approaching 50 minutes. What if Joe Torre just decides his new job is holding press conferences and answering the same questions again and again? What do I do then? Please help. I think I've been duped.
2:46. A spanish reporter just told Joe that she speaks Spanish, and would normally use that language, but for him she's going to ask the question in English. I've forgotten the question.
2:45. Hmmm. Ok. Wouldn't it be awesome if Derek Jeter drove up on a motorcycle, with a studded leather jacket on, and some hottest-chick-in-the-world hanging on to his taut belly (!), and ran to the podium and just started yelling, "Mr. Torre Must Stay! Mr. Torre Must Stay!" and whipped everyone into a frenzy? If you've seen "Lean on Me," with Morgan Freeman as bat-wielding principal Joe Clark — If you haven't, YOU MUST SEE IT! Tonight. Watch it with someone you love. You'll feel better. — the scene would be like the finale in that movie. And then Torre would cry .. .and eventually change his mind, and take the offer, and win the World Series. Right there on the steps in front of city hall..... I'm crying now. Are you crying too? Are you crying from the scene or because you're reading a liveblog of the Joe Torre press conference.
2:43. How did we decide to liveblog Joe Torre's press conference. Wow. I'm doing a lot of looking in the mirror this weekend. Me and Joe have thinking to do. About life, and stuff.
2:40. This whole thing just really raises the issue of baseball managers in general. If you start parsing the details, you can't help but want to say ... WTF DO YOU DO???? You sign off on stuff? Wanna steal? ok. Wanna pitch? ok. The results are dictated by the players. And the GM puts the players on the roster. The manager hangs out and gets paid. Breaking News: Anyone could manage the Yankees. At least to the playoffs. What are Jeter and ARod gonna do, take themselves out the lineup? I like thinking about one of the commenters sitting in the dugout mulling with the pitching coach on whether "it's time for Mariano." I think it's time for a Who Wants to Manage the Yankees? reality show. Let's make some money.
2:38. I openly challenge George Steinbrenner to a Scrabulous duel!
2:35. Someone's reading the live-blog and asked Joe "what he thought of this turnout," and he got a little choked up. He didn't go in for the kill though. Someone should use the "l-word."
2:31. Joe says he wishes the umps stopped the game during The Bug Bowl. I can use a football reference, right? Mr. Torre would forgive me.
2:30. Ok, we're half-hour in. Now I"m serious. Where's Steinbrenner? Alive? If you're alive George, please email. i won't believe it until you send me a message on
2:29. A little tension about Randy Levine. Q: What do you think of him? A: I don't deal with him. And not as smooth as Joe usually is.
2:28. The emotion is gone. We need more tears! Where's Waldman? We need tougher emotionally leading questions. What do you think of Jeter? What did you get Don Zimmer for his birthday?
2:27. Joe Torre's suggestion to the next guy is "Just Be Yourself." I think the book comes out in ttime for spring training next year.
2:26. He suggests that "someone must have nudged him" regarding Steinbrenner. So there IS a conspiracy! I hear The Sopranos theme song faintly rising in the background.
2:25. Who's going to Joe Torre's Media Potluck dinner tonight?I hear everyone's gonna be there ...
2:23. No Steinbrenner. Joe's first mention of him as a "tough taskaster who wants what he pays for." Can anyone verify Steinbrenner is still alive? Press releases don't count. I won't believe it until I see it on youtube.
2:21. While I have an audience, I'm announcing a press conference, just to try it out. I'm announcing that I'm turning down Leitch's offer of $5. With $.50 options every thousand page views. I'm used to $75, STRAIGHT UP. That's the deal. I ushered Deadspin into the post civil rights era. $5 is a slap in the face.
2:19. Q: Is the door absolutely shut? A: I can't say that. But I'm not predictor of the future. If there's a trust established. I'm open. But I don't anticipate it happening.
2:17. "Time for him to look back and appreciate..." all his records and legendary status. Etc. Etc. You almost forget he's made over $70M or something with this job. He'll be ok I think.
2:15. Q: Do you think they offered it knowing that you would turn it down? A: That's for you guys to decide. Q: Would two years have made a difference? A: The paycut was the big issue. It means they're dissatisfied. But two years would have opened a door for communication, yes. (I'm paraphrasing).
2:13. Joe Torre just took a drink of water ... I think this might be a peak moment.
2:12. Nothing new here. He's basically verifying what everyone has said. The contract was a slap in the face (translated to PC Joe Torrese), and that's pretty much it. No negotiating.
2:10. Still laughing from the text message story. Give me time to recover.
2:08. Before questions Torre has an anecdote, About a text message , struggling actor nephew who texted him. He reads, "uncle joe, you may feel a desire to thank me for being such an inspiration to you. but it's not necessary." Hmmm, that was good. Right? .... Here come the questions...
2:07. He thanked Cashman, I guess cause he didn't thank him when he thanked everyone else.
2:06. He's explaining himself. It's what everyone has presumed. The terms were rude. And he didn't want all the stress and added pressure of having to worry about the manager.
2:05. A minute in and we have our first break for cathartic release! This might be very very good.... Ok, he's composed himself. And the server is slow, so I'm able to continue my thought before publishing. Fair warning.
2:04. Joe is wearing a nice suit, and is emotional right off the bat. He starts thanking Scrooge McSteinbrenner. Players, coaches, so no individual mentions of every employee for the past 12 years.
2:03. Hee we go!
2:02. Hasn't started. Should I say something? Ok ...What I do find interesting about this story is that both parties are right, and for both it has everything to do with cachet and nothing to do with $. Yanks offer him top dollar, without the World Series premium. Torre sees a paycut as a slap in the face, which it is. What are you gonna do? Hold a press conference? Liveblog it? Oh, right.
1:59. Watching on YES. Packed house.
1:58. Fair warning: Will told me "go nuts," and I have a genetic disposition towards rambling, and I'm not anticipating this press conference to have much in the way of excitement, so, y'know, ... good luck! Also, I love you. I love you like my father, Joe Torre.
1:57. I'm not sure what channel to watch. It's goign live on most local news networks.
1:55. Breaking News: Joe Torre has TURNED DOWN the Yankees. He will no longer be the manager.