Don Mattingly to Replace Joe Torre in 2011

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Time for change- hopefully Don will do a good job:

Don Mattingly will replace Joe Torre as Dodgers manager, effective for the 2011 season.

Torre, the fifth-winningest manager in MLB history, is in the final year of a three-year contract. Mattingly has been the Dodgers hitting coach since the All-Star break of 2008.

"Over the past three years, I've had the opportunity to work with Don closely and have gotten to know him both personally and professionally and I'm convinced that he's the right person to lead the Dodgers," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said in a news release. "His work ethic is unparalleled, his baseball knowledge is vast and his leadership skills have been established during more than three decades in professional baseball.

"Donnie has also learned alongside the best in the business. Joe Torre has been a great friend, a strong leader and an incredible presence for this organization and I cannot thank him enough for his service to the Dodgers. I respect his decision to step aside and I look forward to the day where I can watch him take his rightful place in Cooperstown among baseball's legends."

Mattingly, 49, was a six-time All-Star as a first baseman for the Yankees and American League MVP in 1985. He has never managed at any level, but when he joined the Dodgers with Torre three years ago, there was no secret that he would be groomed to replace Torre.

"The opportunity to manage the Los Angeles Dodgers is truly an honor," Mattingly said in the release. "There are few organizations in the world with the history, tradition and track record of success as the Dodgers. I'm looking forward to continuing what I came here to accomplish with Joe and that's to win a World Championship."

Mattingly becomes the Dodgers' seventh manager since Tom Lasorda stepped down in 1996 with health issues. Lasorda had managed the Dodgers for 20 years.

Torre, 70, steps down after a disappointing year in which the Dodgers are battling to reach the .500 mark after reaching the NLCS in his first two seasons.

This will be the first time Torre's team does not reach the postseason after 14 consecutive seasons advancing.

Torre had been negotiating a contract extension over the winter, but tabled the discussions during Spring Training, saying that he wasn't sure whether he wanted to manage after this season or how much of a front office role he might want when he did stop managing.

"It has been an incredible honor to wear the Dodger uniform and I will always carry with me some very special memories from the past three seasons," said Torre in the news release. "This was not a decision I took lightly but I believe it's the right one for myself and my family and I'm truly thrilled that Donnie will be the one leading the Dodgers. It's time that the Dodgers had a new voice and I have the utmost confidence in him. I know he's ready for the challenge."

There have been rumors that Torre might be interested in managing elsewhere. In recent weeks he has only said he didn't know what would be out there and couldn't speculate on what he would do.

The change comes with the Dodgers 72-75, in fourth place, 11 games behind San Francisco. ... mp;c_id=la

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