Torre gets earful at Springsteen show
Phils fans have fun with LA manager at Tuesday concert
PHILADELPHIA -- Backstage before his Tuesday night concert at the Spectrum, Bruce Springsteen was telling Joe Torre how his "Working on a Dream" tour won't end until after Thanksgiving, so he'll miss the World Series. But his Monday night show finished in time for the E Street Band to catch the last few innings of the Phillies' win in Game 4.
"Yeah, yeah we saw it," Torre recalled Springsteen saying excitedly. Then, according to Torre, Springsteen remembered he was talking to the losing manager and not a Phillies fan, adding a subdued, "Oh."
Torre said he was introduced to the New Jersey native by Paul O'Neill in his Yankees days. That meeting led to Springsteen performing at a fundraiser for Torre's Safe at Home Foundation two years ago. Torre recounted the comical manner in which that appearance was arranged.
"I remember I was in the grocery store and my cell phone rang and I didn't recognize the number and I didn't answer it," said Torre. "Then I called back the number and a guy answers and asks, 'Who is this?' And I asked him who he was because this number just called me. We both hung up. Five minutes later he calls back and says, 'Joe, this is Bruce.' It was pretty funny. He put on a great show. He was so giving."
After the Dodgers' Tuesday workout, Torre led a club contingent across the street to the concert. Among those joining the manager were general manager Ned Colletti, hitting coach Don Mattingly, players Casey Blake and Mark Loretta and Torre's assistant, Chris Romanello.
"Chris has seen him about 30 times and he got a photo with Bruce," Torre said. "Donnie got a hug. We talked for a while. He's so up. We talked about his conditioning. Hard to believe he's 60."
Torre said this was only his second Springsteen concert, not counting the fundraiser.
"You know, my wife laughs at me when I go to concerts like that," Torre said. "But the thing that I found really remarkable is how every single person there feels like he's there for them. He connects with all those people, whether they're sitting close or way back in the upper deck somewhere. And his energy is crazy."
When Torre entered the arena, he was greeted by Phillies fans chanting, "Beat L.A."
"They were very kind," Torre said. "It was more a dig than of a serious nature. I think everybody was thrilled to be there to see Bruce, not me, but they had some fun with me."
Torre said he held his index finger to his lips to quiet the hecklers.
"This is before the Boss came on," he said. "When he came on they were completely oblivious to the fact that I was there."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.