In a long run managing the Yanks, including four World Series, Torre helped fans understand any slump or injury from the players’ points of view.
Asked last August about veteran Mike Mussina, whose swoon had cost him his spot as a starter, Torre said, “Yes, he’s not maybe as proud of his stuff as he’d like to be.”
True, it’s bad for the team, explained Torre’s subtext. But it’s worse for the player.
Bottom line: Loyalty. A month later Mussina said, “I’d play for the guy anytime.”
—Adapted from “So Long, Joe,” Roger Angell, The New Yorker.