No one has worn number 6 for the Yankees since Joe Torre left the team. And now, no one will wear it again. Mark Feinsand of the Daily News reports that the Yankees are retiring Joe Torre’s number.
The Yankees are not one of those clubs who only retire Hall of Famer numbers — Ron Guidry’s number is retired and no one has worn Bernie Williams’ 51 for years, suggesting that it may one day be retired too — and it’s possible that they’d not retire a Hall of Famer’s number if there was an argument against it. So the news that Torre’s will be retired is not a function of some rule in operation triggered by his election to the Hall of Fame yesterday.
And, given that Torre’s relationship with the Yankees has been somewhat strained over the years since he left, especially after Torre wrote his tell-all book about his Yankees years a few years ago, it’s possible to read this news as both an honor and a reconciliation of sorts.
Yadier Molina has two World Series rings, multiple Gold Gloves, Platinum Gloves, All-Star appearances and a Silver Slugger award. He now has an all-time record too.
The record: the most games caught with one team. Last night he caught his 1756th career game with the Cardinals, with ties him with Gabby Hartnett of the Cubs, who last caught in 1941 and set the record in 1940, his last season with Chicago. Molina will break the record next time he dons the tools of ignorance, likely tonight against the Phillies.
Given how badly catchers get beaten up — and Molina has taken a beating at times in his career — and given how well mastery of the position leads to a catcher earning journeyman status, as it were, it’s quite a thing to catch that many games for one team.
Given that Molina is under contract with the Cardinals for two more seasons and has stated his desire to retire a Cardinal many times, he’s likely to put that record so far out of reach that it’ll likely take at least another 78 years to break it, if indeed it is ever broken.