LOS ANGELES -- It's a story that manager Joe Torre has told before, but it resonated on Sunday as former Major League umpire Doug Harvey was inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Torre was Harvey's first and last ejection in the big leagues, bracketing a career that spanned from 1962 to 1992. The last ejection, though, was choreographed.
"He was the one who told me that I was the first one that he threw out," Torre said. "So he said, 'I'd like you to be the last one.' "
A month or so after that conversation, Torre was managing the Cardinals against the Mets at Shea Stadium and was enjoying a comfortable lead.
"In about the seventh inning, I yelled out about a pitch," he said. "I figured we may not get a better shot at this thing. He came over to me, and I had to explain what we were doing, because it certainly wasn't first and foremost in his mind. And I started arguing with him. I said, 'This is it.' And he looked at me: 'What do you mean, this is it?'
"And I said, 'Remember, you wanted me to be the last guy you threw out?'
"'Oh!' And he starts smiling. He says, 'Get out of here.' "
Harvey had a reputation for always thinking he was correct but never holding grudges, even after tossing players out of a game. For that, Torre appreciated him.
"I'm happy for him. He's always had that nickname 'God,' where he's never missed a pitch," he said. "The one thing you can always respect him [for] is, he came to work every day. If he had an argument with you and threw you out, it never carried over, it stopped right there. And that I admire, because it's not fair if you let it affect something else. Whatever you think of the way he did his job, he always did his job. I think he certainly got a lot of respect from his peers for that."