Sunday, November 13, 2011

Joe Torre Needs To Shut Up About Posada

I know this probably shouldn't bother me at all, but it does and so I have to say something about it.

I don't want to hear Joe Torre commenting on the Jorge Posada situation with the Yankees anymore.  I don't.  He commented on it on Tuesday, saying:

"It’s really tough when you play with one team and create the relationships that he has all these years. It's probably going to be tough to think about going somewhere else."

And then on Thursday at a function for his own charity organization, Torre had this to say about Jorge's HOF chances:

"I've noticed over the years when guys get voted in, whether it’s first ballot, second ballot -- if you play in postseason, people get a chance to see you in a different light and it may carry a little more weight. But as much postseason as he’s played in, I think consideration is certainly warranted."

Now I get that Torre managed Jorge for the majority of his Yankee career and the peak of that career that included Jorge's best seasons and 4 World Series championships for both.  I get that Torre probably shares a great bond with Jorge because of that and because of the fact that they are both former catchers.  But here's the thing, Torre isn't a part of the Yankee organization anymore.  For argument's sake, you could that Jorge isn't either, but Torre holds a job with Major League Baseball, a very prominent one too as Executive BP of Baseball Operations.  And something just doesn't sit right with me about a guy holding that position commenting on the goings on of a team with which he was formerly employed and with which he had a deep connection.

In the position he's currently in, Torre should always be objective and neutral in all his dealings and this string of comments this week about a former player on the former team he managed doesn't give off that vibe.  To me, this is the type of stuff Torre and the MLB shouldn't be involved in or commenting on- an individual team's dealing or lack thereof with a free agent- and to comment on it suggests a potential bias or vested interest that Torre, and by association MLB, has towards the situation.  The last thing that should be happening here is for teams' plans to be changed because of statements made by the MLB office, or for Hall of Fame voters to be swayed by something Torre, a league official, said.

If he were just a regular retired former manager or working in the media, it would be OK.  Former players and coaches can be good in those media roles because of all the behind-the-scenes history and insight they can provide on former teams and players.  But it's just not the same when you're representing the league, the governing body over all the teams and players, and I'd hate for any kind of talk of league interference in whatever happens with Posada to come up.  That wouldn't be good for the Yankees, it wouldn't be good for Posada, and it wouldn't be good for the league.

So Joe, I respect the fact that you have your feelings and opinions on the Yankee-Posada issue.  As someone who worked closely with Jorge for such a long time, you're entitled to have them.  But in the position you're in as a high-ranking MLB official, you need to realize that the days of being able to talk openly and candidly about everything Yankee-related are over.  The only people who should be commenting on this are Jorge, the Yankees, and any other team seriously interested in signing Jorge.  Keep your mouth shut about this and let the situation play out amongst the parties involved.