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Torre has lunch with Steinbrenner, but does not discuss contract

9/26/2007

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Yankees manager Joe Torre and owner
George Steinbrenner discussed a variety of topics over lunch
Wednesday, but Torre's future was not one of them.

In the final year of his contract, Torre spent about an hour at
the Yankees' spring training facility near Tampa with Steinbrenner,
general manager Brian Cashman, Steinbrenner's sons Hal and Hank,
and team senior vice president Felix Lopez.

It was the first time Torre and Steinbrenner have talked in
person since the Yankees' last trip to Tampa Bay, right after the
All-Star break in July.

"We don't talk about it," Torre said of his contract status.
"We just talked about team, basically. They wanted to get a feel
on what Brian and I thought about the guys we're going forward
with."

Torre's contract situation will be addressed after the season.

Torre said Steinbrenner was upbeat about the team, which began
the season 21-29 but had a magic number of one to clinch a
postseason berth entering play Wednesday. New York failed to secure
a playoff spot Tuesday night, blowing a five-run lead in a 6-5,
10-inning loss to the Devil Rays.

The Yankees wrap up a three-game set in Tampa Bay on Thursday,
then conclude the regular season with a three-game series in
Baltimore. New York still has an outside shot at catching Boston in
the AL East, but trailed the Red Sox by three games entering
Wednesday.

"I thought he was fine," Torre said of Steinbrenner. "I said,
'How are you doing?' He said, 'Not so good.' I knew right away that
he was fine. I said, 'You and me both.' I was very comfortable. I
enjoyed it."