LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles Dodgers manager Grady Little resigned on Tuesday as speculation grew that former New York Yankees manager Joe Torre was poised to join the National League club.
Little, 57, stayed two seasons with the Dodgers, making the playoffs in 2006 and finishing fourth in 2007, but reports from within the club said he had lost control of the players and would not be brought back for the final year of his contract.
“This was a mutual decision that Ned and I decided is the best direction for the Dodger organization to take,” Little said during a joint conference call with Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti.
Little, who managed the Boston Red Sox during the 2002 and 2003 seasons, left the Dodgers after posting a 170-154 record
“I want to thank Grady for his two years of dedicated service to the organization,” Colletti said. “I have the utmost respect for him and I wish him the best both professionally and personally.”
The 67-year-old Torre was linked with the Dodgers after turning down a one-year offer earlier this month to return for a 13th season as Yankees manager.
Torre managed the New York Mets, Atlanta Braves and St. Louis Cardinals in the National League with little success before leading the Yankees to four world championships, the most recent in 2000.
He was paid $7.5 million last season the final year of a three-year deal, more than double the next highest paid manager in the major leagues, Lou Piniella of the Chicago Cubs at $3.5 million.
The Dodgers have not won the World Series since 1988.
Additional reporting by Mike Shalin in Boston