Torre planning to retire after next year … probably

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As his Dodgers prepare for the NLCS against the Phillies that begins tomorrow night, Joe Torre indicated yesterday that 2010 will likely be his final season as manager.
“I have one year on my contract and I don’t anticipate it being more than that,” said Torre, who then added a disclaimer. “I’ve said that before and my wife doesn’t believe me at all.”
Torre, who’ll turn 70 years old in the middle of next season, has guided the Dodgers to back-to-back division titles and has managed his teams to 14 consecutive postseason appearances dating back to his first year with the Yankees in 1996. Bobby Cox is the only other manager who can claim that many trips to the playoffs in a row and Torre holds the all-time record with 84 postseason victories, including four championships.
“I never get tired of this stuff, that’s one thing I found out,” Torre said. “You think once you win it, you say, ‘OK, I got it, I don’t need to do this anymore,’ but you do. You need to do it.”

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.