Torre to manage Team USA in '13 WBC
Former MLB skipper will make debut in red, white and blue
Currently Major League Baseball's executive vice president for baseball operations, Torre will be making his debut in red, white and blue next March for the third installment of the WBC. Dates and locations are to be announced, but first-ever qualifiers are set to be held in September and November of 2012 across four international venues.
"I am honored to be selected to lead Team USA in the 2013 World Baseball Classic," Torre said. "I have been fortunate to have many different experiences throughout my career, but being a part of Team USA will be a first, and I am very excited about it. I look forward to the challenge of representing the United States when this tournament celebrates the global growth of our national pastime next year."
"We are thrilled to announce Joe Torre as the manager of the U.S. for the upcoming World Baseball Classic," said Paul Seiler, USA Baseball executive director/CEO. "Joe's track record as a manager speaks for itself, and we're excited to have his leadership in place as we attempt to secure our first World Baseball Classic title."
Torre, a nine-time All-Star who played in the Major Leagues from 1960-1977, was a .297 career hitter with 252 home runs and 1,185 RBIs. He was the 1971 National League Most Valuable Player as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals, batting .363 with 230 hits, 24 home runs and 137 RBIs. Torre served as a Major League manager for 29 seasons, leading the New York Mets (1977-1981), the Atlanta Braves (1982-1984), the Cardinals (1990-1995), the New York Yankees (1996-2007) and the Los Angeles Dodgers (2008-2010). His 2,326 wins as a manager rank fifth all-time. The Brooklyn, N.Y., native guided the Yankees to four World Series championships (1996, 1998-2000), six American League pennants and 12 postseason appearances, including 10 AL East titles, in his 12 years as manager. Torre then led the Dodgers to two consecutive NL West crowns in 2008 and 2009, which included two straight appearances in the National League Championship Series, before stepping away from the dugout following the 2010 season.
Following his three-year run with the Dodgers, in early 2011, Torre was hired by Major League Baseball in the capacity in which he currently serves. He left briefly in January 2012 to explore opportunities with a group that participated in the bidding for the Dodgers, and then returned to his post at MLB in March.
The U.S. team has yet to place better than fourth in the WBC, finishing sixth in the inaugural event in 2006 and fourth overall in 2009. The club was previously led by Buck Martinez and current Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson, respectively, and most recently featured a lineup of Major League Baseball All-Stars like Derek Jeter, David Wright, Dustin Pedroia, Curtis Granderson and Evan Longoria.
Dates, venues and schedules for the 2013 World Baseball Classic are set to be released by Major League Baseball in the coming weeks. Regional qualifiers will be held for the first time in 2012, and the winners of each qualifying pool will advance to compete next March. The four venues that have been selected to host a qualifying pool are: Armin-Wolf-Baseball-Arena in Regensburg, Germany (Sept. 20-24); Rod Carew Stadium in Panama City (Nov. 14-18); XinZuang Stadium in Taipei, Taiwan (Nov. dates TBD); and Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla. (Nov. dates TBD). The top team from each pool will join the 12 other countries -- which includes the United States -- that have already advanced to the 2013 WBC based on performance in the 2009 tournament.
Torre and USA Baseball will round out the coaching staff and U.S. roster over the next several months.