Yankees bench coach Don Mattingly has told a member of the Steinbrenner family he does not feel ready for the manager's job and is uncomfortable with replacing Joe Torre, according to a friend of Mattingly.
The friend, who requested anonymity because the situation is unresolved, said he spoke directly with the former Yankees great in recent days. Mattingly's stance could open the door for the Yankees to bring back Torre for a 13th season because he was the leading candidate for the job.
The development comes as George Steinbrenner and his sons, Hank and Hal, convene an annual top-to-bottom review of the organization Tuesday. A Yankees official, who speaks often with top management, said Torre is a candidate for the job. The official, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak for the owners, said the discussion was expected to center on who is the best man for the job as opposed to a referendum on Torre, whose contract is expiring.
This is obviously major news if the story turns out to be true since Mattingly is the leading candidate to succeed Torre.
This development could be another indication that Torre will return as the Yankee skipper because I get the feeling that the Yankee brass is a bit weary of handing over the reigns to Joe Girardi.
Update [2007-10-16 12:12:29 by anaconda]:
Mattingly’s agent, Ray Schulte, appeared on ESPN Radio 1050 this morning and denies the report and said that it was "completely fabricated."
Hopefully, all of this will be resolved in the next day or two so that we can concentrate on other matters like Alex Rodriguez and the rest of the free agent bunch.