No Decision On Torre's Future Yet

Wednesday, October 17th 2007, 10:52 am
By: News On 6

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ Yankees' officials resumed meetings Wednesday at Legends Field, with no decision yet on Joe Torre's future as manager.

``I can't speculate,'' Yankees president Randy Levine said as he entered the team's spring training home. ``When we have something to tell you, we will let you know.''

Owner George Steinbrenner told The Record of Hackensack, N.J., on Oct. 6 that he didn't think he'd bring back the manager if the Yankees failed to advance to the AL championship series. Cleveland then eliminated New York in four games, sending New York to its third straight first-round exit.

The owner's sons, Hank and Hal, were seen at Steinbrenner's house on Tuesday along with son-in-law Felix Lopez as meetings began. Chief operating officer Lonn Trost, general manager Brian Cashman and assistant general manager Jean Afterman also were in town.

Torre has managed the Yankees to the playoffs in all 12 of his seasons and helped the team win the World Series in four of his first five years. But the Yankees haven't won the World Series since 2000 and haven't won the AL pennant since 2003.

If Torre doesn't return, bench coach Don Mattingly is the leading contender to take over. Yankees broadcaster Joe Girardi, the NL Manager of the Year with the Florida Marlins in 2006, is another possibility.

The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J., reported Tuesday that Mattingly told a member of the Steinbrenner family he does not feel ready for the manager's job and is uncomfortable with replacing Torre.

Ray Schulte, a spokesman for Mattingly, said the report was ``completely false, totally fabricated and took Don completely by surprise.''

``If and when a decision is made concerning Joe's future, Don will respond, at that time,'' Schulte said in a statement. ``In the meantime, he wants what is best for Joe and the Yankee organization!''