Joe Torre's Final Act as a Yankee Shows Steinbrenner that Money Isn't Everything

Joe Torre turned down an offer to stay with the Yankee's for $5 million, with the possibility of making an additional $3 million in bonuses if his team reached the World Series.

To New Yorkers and to everyone who follows baseball, George Steinbrenner has one goal in mind and that is winning and he has shown himself to be willing to pay anything just to increase his chances of winning.

Joe Torre had been the Yankees longest standing manager until yesterday.  After another year of failing to reach the Yankees objectives (a World Series title), Steinbrenner made clear through the media that he wasn't happy with Torre's results.  He then gave Torre the silent treatment for over a week before summoning him to Florida.  When Torre arrived there yesterday, he learned that in fact Steinbrenner wanted him to remain as manager, but Steinbrenner showed his displeasure with Torre by offering him a guaranteed $5 million salary, which while still far above any other manager in the league was 33% below his salary in 2007.  Steinbrenner however offered Torre the ability to make an additional $3 million by leading his team to the World Series in 2008.  It appears that Joe Torre summarily rejected the offer and returned immediately to his home in New York.

When Joe Torre emerged to speak to the media today, he disclosed why he turned the offer down.  While he is already very wealthy, he admitted that he would have liked to accept the $5 million, but he stated that he found the additional $3 million in bonuses to be an insult at it implied that his only incentive to win would be the additional money (he also seems to have been driven to turn the offer down because it was a one year deal and because of the way in which he was given the silent treatment for over a week, but that is less clear).

So Joe Torre ends his incredibly popular tenure as manager.  While his team has underperformed some expectations in recent Octobers, he leaves as popular as any outgoing manager has ever been in New York.  But, the most important thing is that he delivers an important message that all new Yorkers and Americans should appreciate - as important as money is, sometimes substance and integrity is just so much more valuable.

Ari Socolow
Ari Socolow: Ari Socolow is the Chief Economist and Editor-in-Chief at BestCashCow. He is particularly interested in issues relating to financial literacy and bank transparency. Since co-founding this website in 2005, Ari has been frequently cited in the media as an expert on local and national savings accounts, CD products, mortgage and loan products and credit card rewards products.

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