Results tagged ‘ The Yankee Years ’

Impressions of Joe Torre’s book

Torre.jpg“The Yankee Years” is sitting on my coffee table right now, neighbored by a Frank Sinatra retrospective and the authorized history of the Ford Mustang. (Alas, I haven’t found Cosmo Kramer’s coffee table book on coffee tables.)

I said that I’d reserve judgment on Joe Torre’s book until I had a chance to crack its spine. Well, here it is:

This book didn’t need to be written.

That said, I’m glad it was.

As someone who was around the clubhouse the last year of Torre’s tenure, it’s amazing to read what was going on behind the closed doors – information that just wasn’t available to reporters and could only be known by the people who were actually involved in the day-to-day operations. Torre keeps talking about how this book will be a piece of history – I’d say it already is.

It’s not the salacious tell-all some people want you to believe it is. It’s a baseball book by an excellent writer in Verducci, with Torre speaking up as the main source – a man uniquely qualified to comment on the Yankees during that 12 year period, because he lived it.

If you cared about the Yankees from 1996 through 2007 – rooted for them
in the World Series, bought tickets to Yankee Stadium, wore an
interlocking ‘NY’ cap around town – it’s only natural to want to know
what actually happened. This book gives you a taste.

Put it in the books

Torre.jpgJoe Torre’s book comes out today, with the former Yankees manager touring the tri-state area on a media blitz to promote “The Yankee Years.” We’ve all seen and heard so much about this book already, and I’m looking forward to finally getting a copy in my hands and reading it cover to cover to accurately judge it.

What about you? Is this the type of thing that you’ll pick up on the first day, or are you content to wait it out? I’ve seen on some of the blogs that diehard Yankees fans are vowing not to pay for the book, and plan to read it from their local libraries. Others still are sick of all this “he-said, he-said” stuff and are just ready to see the boys on the field in Tampa.

There’s something to be said for that, as I look out the window and see yet another coating of snow to be cleared from my car. But before we can get to sunny Florida, there are a few more hurdles – and one is the Torre book. Hey, it could be worse. We could be talking about medical waste in Brian McNamee’s basement.

I’ll be at the Barnes & Noble at 555 Fifth Ave. this afternoon at 12:30 p.m. to see what – if anything – the skipper has to say. Then later it’s off to Pleasantville (New York, not the movie) to check in with Brian Cashman. Busy day.

By the way, if you’re in the camp that won’t read Torre’s text — or you just want a refreshing change of pace — I have a suggestion for you.

Jane Heller was nice enough to send me a copy of her just-released book, “Confessions of a She-Fan,” and many of you would relate. It’s a look at the ’07 season through the eyes of an extremely passionate die-hard fan, the kind that live and die with every win and loss. Know anybody like that? 

Anything interesting happening with the Yankees?

Oh, just another day in paradise. When people ask, “What do you do during the offseason?”, my response is almost always that the Yankees don’t have an offseason. Sometimes the winter is more intense than the summer.

The Yankees completed one important piece of business on Monday, signing Andy Pettitte to a one-year, $5.5 million contract with multiple incentive levels. Obviously this is a huge pay cut from the guaranteed $16 million Pettitte made in ’07 and ’08, but this was as high as the Yankees were going to go.

Pettitte knew that it was time to make a decision, and $5.5 million — with the chance to make up to $12 million in incentives — sure beats $0 for sitting at home. With the addition of Pettitte to the 40-man roster, Chase Wright was designated for assignment.

One other tidbit: Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera and Hideki Matsui are all on track for now.

Now, on to the Joe Torre business, which is sending us all back in our own little time machines. Someone was asking me about my taxes and I actually slipped up and wrote the wrong year … and not even that usual January mistake, I fouled up two years. Seems like this book has us more focused on the ’07 Yankees than the current version.

A-Rod is supposedly laughing off the ‘A-Fraud’ stuff — and look, if you didn’t already know that Alex had some difficulty keeping a low profile, you weren’t paying attention. Some things haven’t changed — by the way, has anyone heard anything about Madonna lately?

Brian Cashman thinks the Yankees might rally around each other as a result of this latest controversy. Hey, you know this team. If it wasn’t this going into the spring, it’d probably be something else.

I want to reserve judgment on this book until I actually hold it in my hands, and based on what I’ve pieced together from excerpts floating around the Internet, that seems like the proper course of action. It seems that there will be a lot more context to base the most salacious parts on when ‘The Yankee Years’ is consumed in its entirety. 

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