Today in White Sox History: October 11

1899 — The new American League was formed in Chicago. The city didn’t have a team in the league at that point but soon got the St. Paul, Minn. team, led by player/manager Charles Comiskey. They set up shop on the South Side.

1991 — White Sox manager Jeff Torborg, who was named Manager of the Year for 1990, resigned to take a job as manager of the New York Mets. It was a strange move, and the real reason for it wasn’t made known until years later, as Torborg told individuals and provided examples of how then-White Sox GM Ron Schueler forced him out.

6 thoughts on “Today in White Sox History: October 11

    1. Ffrom my interview with Jeff:

      “Later in the season we were in Minnesota for a two game series, it was a must win series for us because we were running out of time and I heard Peter Gammons report on ESPN that my job was in jeopardy. I was thinking, ‘where is this coming from?’ Then the last home stand of the year when we played the Twins again, Ron Schueler came into my office before it started and he closed the door. I was wondering what was going on. Ron said to me, “The Mets called me today and they want to talk with you about the managing job.” I told him,

      “Ron, I appreciate it but I have no interest.” Ron said, “well think about it and I’ll come back in a few days. We’ll talk again.” I’m sitting there wondering what is going on, because I said I had no interest.”

      “So right before the last games, we had a makeup double header; Ron comes back and asks if I thought about the Mets offer. I told him again that I had no interest but then I said “Ron, I’ve got to ask you because this has come up, where I fit in with you and the organization?” He looked at me and said, “I think both of us would feel bad if you turned it down and then something happened.”

      “When he said that I had to think twice about what was happening. Ron and I never had a cross word between us that season but he wanted to hire his own guy, so when the Mets called I took the offer. It was the best thing for me financially but it was the worst move professionally I could have made.

      Ironically about a half hour after I verbally told the Mets I’d take the job the Yankees called and said they were firing “Stump” Merrill and offered me the position. I told them I had already given my word to the Mets and couldn’t go back on it but I didn’t want to leave the Sox in the first place.” (Author’s Note: Schueler and the organization first contacted former Sox coach Jimmy Leyland, then the manager of the Pirates about the position, but he turned them down instead suggesting his longtime base coach Gene Lamont, who got the job.)


      1. I remember most of that. I liked Torberg and Lamont. Schueler, I could not stand. He was a pathetic GM. Inherited Larry Himes team and lived off it. And those were the days that Jerry was spending.


      2. This is a 30-year-old memory, but I swear I didn’t make it up. What makes Mark’s true account of this a little more insidious is that at the time (because to fans, this really made no sense at all) the White Sox/Torborg pitched this as Jeff wanting to: be closer to home and manage a hometown team of his and/or be closer to his mother, who was ill or something along those lines.

        I remember thinking MAN does this suck, because the White Sox are On Their Way … but, jeez, I can understand, poor guy wants to be near his mom and has earned the right to pick his job given what he’s done with the Sox.

        So the White Sox/Schueler forced out Jeff Torborg, who was golden on the South Side … for GENE LAMONT. ohboy


      3. Jeff told me that while his Mom’s illness was a small factor the reason he said what he did at the time was because he didn’t want to cause any hard feelings at least publicly.


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