Torre, Bowa and Mattingly Introduced in L.A.

Joe Torre, wearing Dodger uniform No. 6, made famous by Carl Furillo in Brooklyn and Steve Garvey in Los Angeles, was introduced as the new Dodgers manager in a center-field press conference at Dodger Stadium. He brought along a pair of coaches who will work with him, Larry Bowa and Don Mattingly.

Born where the Dodgers were born, Torre said with tongue firmly in cheek, "Being from Brooklyn, I'd better get this out. We had the Dodgers, the Giants and the Yankees. We were pretty spoiled in the East. I managed the Yankees and now I get to manage the Dodgers and I was a Giants fan. I want to apologize for that right now."

Torre was accompanied by his wife, Ali, and Dodgers owners Frank and Jamie McCourt as they strolled across the field to meet the media that was so large the event was held outdoors.

"When I think of the Dodgers, I think of efficiency, I think of pride, I think of a measuring stick," Torre said. "You always measured yourself against the Dodgers, because they always did everything right."

"I just came from a prestigious organization and an now in another prestigious organization. It makes he have chills thinking about it," he said.

"This is one of a handful of organizations you automatically say yes too, or say you are interested in talking to," Torre said. "The Yankees have been either hated or loved in the American League, and I put the Dodgers in that same class in the National League, because there's envy involved and there's admiration involved."

It is a far different challenge to the one Torre faced when he took over the Yankees 12 years ago.

"The expectations are high here, and I just have a sense that we're all going to pull this thing in the same direction and I think that's a great way to start," he said. "It's very tough to win a World Series. It's very tough to get to the postseason.

"I want to have the players understand that the road to where we want to be is going to be a bumpy one and see if we're good enough to make it. Whether we go there or not, I'm that same Joe - trust me."

"The thing I'm enthused about ... is the number of young players - and talented young players I might add - that we have," Torre said. "Don Mattingly - I can't tell you how excited he is as he has a son in the organization, Preston."

Torre was asked the obligatory question, would Alex Rodriguez be a player on his radar. Torre did not answer but said he would have no problems working with A-Rod in the future.

"Alex Rodriguez and I have a good association," Torre said. "I think our relationship is fine. I know so much was made in Detroit when I hit him eighth. That night, he gave me a big hug. Unfortunately we lost and we said our goodbyes.

"I think last year he was a lot more comfortable and that led to him having an MVP year. ... My relationship with Alex is fine. I'm sure Alex is going to do whatever is best for his family."

"The goals are, as far as I'm concerned, you go out there and you play hard, you play smart and you hope to get a good result," he said. "But I can talk about it all day long. We're going to have to prove it out here.

"It's all about playing on the field, about how consistent you are, how dedicated you are and what's important to you. I've learned a lot of lessons in my baseball life. Winning is important, yes, but it's more important to build a foundation to win."

Torre is 67, making him the oldest manager the Dodgers have ever hired. But reading between the lines, it would look like Don Mattingly is the manager-in-waiting.

Torre has managed 27 years for four Major League teams, the last 12 with the Yankees. He never reached the World Series until he managed the Yankees and won four world championships there, but none since 2000. The Yankees finished second in the American League East in 2007 for the first time since 1997.

Torre will be the third manager for the Dodgers since the McCourts purchased the club less than four years ago and the Dodgers' sixth manager in the last 10 years (Bill Russell, Glenn Hoffman and Davey Johnson are the others).

"It has been far too long since Dodger fans have tasted the fruits of victory or Dodger players have raised a World Series trophy," Frank McCourt said, sounding a bit like Tommy Lasorda. "We want to win, make no mistake about it, but we want to win the right way, with humility, pride and sportsmanship. Winning requires leadership and today we introduce a man who is a leader, a winner, no doubt a future Hall of Famer."

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