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Steinbrenner Says Torre Will Return

October 04, 2003|From Associated Press

New York Yankee owner George Steinbrenner insists Joe Torre will be back to manage the team next season, no matter what the founder of USA Today thinks.

Responding to a column in the newspaper by Al Neuharth, Steinbrenner gave Torre a vote of confidence Friday and said the manager will keep his job regardless of how the Yankees do this postseason.

"My job is here, to manage this club. When he feels it's not good enough, then that's up to him," Torre said.

The Yankees and Minnesota Twins were tied 1-1 in the best-of-five division series heading into Game 3 today at the Minneapolis Metrodome.

Neuharth called Torre "baseball's most overrated manager" and said if the Yankees don't reach the World Series this season Steinbrenner could finally fire Torre.

"I have great respect for Al Neuharth as a businessman and an innovator," the owner said in a statement. "On this one, he's wrong. He's been caught off base. Joe Torre is my manager. I support him. He's done the job. And he'll be my manager next year."

Torre has been New York's manager since 1996, winning four World Series titles and five American League pennants.


The Yankees will turn to Roger Clemens in a big game, possibly for the final time.

It would be hard to imagine a better choice -- he doesn't figure to get rattled by the deafening din at the Metrodome, where the Twins are 13-3 in the postseason.

"He's one of the best pitchers to ever put on spikes," Minnesota first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz said.

The 41-year-old winner of 310 games is adamant that 2003 will be his final season. If the Yankees can't win at least once this weekend, it will be his final start.

"I haven't thought of it that way," said Clemens, who is 23-12 against the Twins in his career. "I always think positive, so I'm going to think that we are going to win."

Twin starter Kyle Lohse turns 25 today, so a win over Clemens would be a nice gift.

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