Joe Torre, who left his post in January to pursue a potential ownership opportunity with the Dodgers, has returned to Major League Baseball as an executive vice president for baseball operations.

Torre, best known for managing the Yankees to four World Series titles, served as field boss for the Dodgers from 2008 to 2010. The two-time Manager of the Year joined the Major League office in February of 2011, and his primary responsibilities were to oversee Major League Operations, Umpiring, On-Field Operations and On-Field Discipline.

Torre, who has spent five decades in the game in one capacity or another, will resume those duties and will also serve as the Commissioner's primary liaison to the general managers and field managers of the 30 Major League clubs.

"I am very excited to come back to the Commissioner's Office," said Torre. "This is a great era for Major League Baseball and it's an honor to work with the Commissioner and to play a part in the game's future. Collectively, we will continue to examine ways that we can make baseball better for our fans, clubs and players."

Prior to his managing career, Torre had an 18-year stint as a player. Torre logged a .297 batting average and went to nine All-Star Games in a career spent with Milwaukee, Atlanta, St. Louis and the New York Mets.

He reached his peak as a player in 1971, when he led the league in hits (230), RBIs (137), extra-base hits (352) and batting average (.363), a campaign that brought him the National League's Most Valuable Player Award. Torre also earned a rare honor in 1977, when he was named player-manager for the Mets and led them to a 49-68 record.

Torre led the Mets for five seasons and never led them to a winning record, and he moved on to manage Atlanta in 1982. Torre stuck with the Braves for three years -- leading them to a division title in 1982.

Broadcasting was his next challenge, but Torre came back to the manager's perch in 1990 with the Cardinals. He won at least 80 games in his first three complete seasons with St. Louis, but never led the Cardinals to the playoffs.

Torre's life -- and his career bio -- changed dramatically in his tenure with the Yankees. His debut season in New York, 1996, gave the Yankees their first World Series appearance since 1981, and he went on to win four World Series titles in his first five seasons with New York. Torre would also lead the Yankees to World Series losses in 2001 and 2003.

Torre is 2326-1997 for his 29-year managing career, and most of those victories -- 1,942 -- came when he was presiding over the Yankees. Torre's final managing stop, at Los Angeles, resulted in two division titles in three seasons.

Allan H. Selig, the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, issued a statement welcoming Torre back to the fold.

"I am pleased that Joe shared our enthusiasm about returning to Major League Baseball," he said. "It was appropriate for him to step away while he looked into a unique opportunity, and now we are delighted to welcome him back to a position in which he thrived. Joe is an accomplished baseball man, a remarkable communicator and a great asset to our efforts to improve our game and to serve the 30 Clubs."