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Local Sports

March 26, 2014

Hall provides historical journey for Torre

(Continued)

Induction Day will come July 27 at the Clark Sports Center, where Torre will be joined by fellow electees Bobby Cox, Tony La Russa, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas.

“I’m aware I need to mention the people who had a big impact on me professionally,” said Torre, who serves as Major League Baseball’s vice president for baseball operations. “When you start talking about family, that’s when the tears are going to start flowing.

“Hopefully, (my speech), will mean as much to the people who hear it as the guy who’s saying it,” he continued. “It’s really going to come from the heart. Baseball has been my whole life and so many people who were behind me and boosting me to this spot. I know it’s going to be emotional. It’s going to be overwhelming, but hopefully when I get up to the microphone when I say something, I hope it comes out.”

Torre’s the only person in baseball history to amass 2,000 hits as a player and win more than 2,000 games as a manager. He finished with 2,342 hits and won 2,326 games over 29 seasons as a manager, including 286 over five seasons with the Mets (1977-81) and 1,173 with the Yankees over 11 seasons with the Yankees (1996-2007).

The Yankees went to the World Series six times under Torre, winning four with the likes of future Hall of Famers Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera leading the way.

“To play for (18 years) and to manage for close to 30, it was always brand new for me,” Torre said. “It never felt like something I had to do, it was something I wanted to do and I was blessed with the ability to do it.”

Hall President Jeff Idelson, who spoke to the media before Torre’s arrival in the plaque gallery, said of Torre’s career: “When you look at the way he has led so many organizations in so many different ways, whether it be a player, where you can make a case for him as a Hall of Famer, to being a Hall of Fame manager – he’s now an executive, he was a great broadcaster (from 1985-1990), he’s a great human being, so for him being here today is special for him and for us.”

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