Joe Torre’s Safe at Home Gala – Behind the Scenes


As everyone knows, Joe came back to New York for his annual fundraiser. It was held at Manhattan’s Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers.
Very swanky establishment and the perfect spot to honor the 1998 World Champion Yankees. A good cause. Good food. And really good only so-so musical talent.
Some guests skipped the red carpet. Others were happy to pose for the cameras.
Looks very friendly and festive, doesn’t it? What you don’t know is what went on during the party, so I’m going to tell you. It wasn’t all man hugs and air kisses.
First, an actress who had earlier in the day gone off her Zoloft threw a hissy over not being seated at Jeter’s table.
Yep, Dr. Melfi. She’s a Yankee she-fan, God love her, but she got pretty rowdy.
Another famous she-fan threw her martini in Willie Randolph’s face when he said he wouldn’t manage the Yankees if his life depended on it.
That Penny. Such a firebrand. I’m praying she’ll option my book and direct the movie, but she needs to simmer down.
David Cone and Joe Girardi were like two mean girls, laughing snidely when they heard David Wells say he wants to be a coach.
Well, the idea is sort of ludicrous.
Andy Pettitte was downright livid that all those two could talk about was Sabathia.
“I’m sittin’ here waiting for the Yankees to call but the phone doesn’t ring. Everybody’s too busy goin’ on and on about CC,” he told me in that cute Texas drawl of his. “It’s not fair, y’all. I’m way better than that guy.”
I was in the midst of consoling him when Jeter motioned me over to his table.
“Don’t listen to Andy,” he muttered out of the corner of his mouth. “He’s just jealous because I’ve been talking to CC, trying to recruit him, even offering him the name of my tailor so he won’t have to shop at those cheesy big and tall men stores anymore.”
Who knew Jeter was so catty, right?
Speaking of fighting, along came a couple who caused a commotion with their heated argument.
It was over whether Jorge’s surgically repaired shoulder will be 100% on Opening Day. Laura Posada said her husband should at least consider playing first base, but JoPo went wild at the idea, shouting: “I’m a catcher! I don’t want to learn a new position! Got it?” We all got it, Jorge. Just chill.
Mariano Rivera also talked about his surgery when I caught up with him at his table.
But – and I found this highly surprising, given Mo’s usually calm demeanor – he was barking at a waiter that his dinner wasn’t prepared the way he’d ordered it. I guess now that he has his own restaurant, he’s gotten temperamental about such things.
There were other disturbances. El Duque high-kicked a passing tray of hors d’oeuvres right onto the floor. Yogi cracked a joke that made James Lipton, the host of “Inside the Actors Studio,” choke on a breadstick. And Mike Francesa and Chris Russo, pretending to get along during the early part of the evening, eventually stabbed each other with their forks. Both were taken to an area hospital and are said to be in stable condition.
Whew. Glad I made it out of there in one piece. 
Seriously, Joe’s foundation is a worthy cause. So if anyone feels inspired to donate, click here.


  1. levelboss

    hee-larious, Jane (or should i say “she-larious”?)
    “..even offering him the name of my tailor so he won’t have to shop at those cheesy big and tall men stores anymore” lol! i was thinking Andy’s suit looks like it’s from the early 60’s – tight and baby-blue

  2. Jane Heller

    Thanks, levelboss. You’re right about Andy’s suit. He could use some wardrobe advice from Jeter, who always looks very GQ.

  3. Kylie

    Aah, Andy Pettitte. It would be a lie if I said I didn’t miss him playing for my team.
    Jeeeet! He always looks so… interested. Not interesting, interested in whatever is said. I think it’s his big eyes.
    I’m in Denver right now and I went to Sports Authority and saw all these Matt Holliday Rockies shirts and realized they’ll all be on sale in a few weeks when he’s traded… sad.
    Kylie —

  4. Jane Heller

    Kylie, if the Yankees keep dragging their feet you could have Andy back. He says he wants to play for the Yanks but he said that last time and you know how that turned out! It must be weird seeing those Holliday jerseys in Denver. Wonder where he’s headed?

    Sorry, Greg. I’m just not a Bon Jovi fan. To me he’s always been Springsteen Lite. But I certainly respect those who disagree!

  5. thegoodofthegame

    Hey Jane,
    Love the blog.
    You come very highly recommended by Mark. He tells me you’re writing a book. I’m very interested in reading it. Drop me a line or stop by the blog:
    Best of luck,


    “so-so musical talent.”–Bruce is a tough act to follow.
    Thanks for the scoops, keep up the good work.
    Mark/Baseball Hot Corner


    Nice pont about Andy saying he wanted to play for the Yanks before bolting for Houston. I really think they are in the drivers seat with his contract, he is nowhere near worth $16M. You can never have too many lefties, and he did have a decent ’08, but he is stll on the downside of his career. If they bring back Pettitte, I hope Moose retires. I don’t like Jorge at first either, Texiera is looking better and better.
    Whats the holdup on this book??

  8. bostonredsoxgirl46

    Yeah, Colbert and Stewart are the funniest and smartest guys on television. I prefer them over all the other news shows. I’m thinking one of them should run in 2012, they’re definitely smart enough.
    That’s super cool, that you got to go to this event. I hope everything with your movie/book is going well. When does your book come out anyway? I’d love to read it.

  9. phillies_phollowers

    Hi Jane :O) Thanks for visiting my blog…glad you liked it! Yours is terrific! I am looking forward to getting your new book…I am also a Yankees fan. Grew up in NJ and they were really the first team I rooted for until I went to that Phillies game back in 1980 and converted. Of course, then I figured it was ok to have one team in the AL and one in the NL, so I root for both :O)
    So I have to say, I am so jealous! I have always wanted to meet Derek Jeter; he is like a baseball God! Got close at the All-Star break in NYC this year, but no such luck. I would love to pick his brain about baseball, and about growing up in NJ :O) Someday…
    Anyway, very nice to meet you! Take care,


  10. Jane Heller

    First to redsoxgirl – a disclaimer!!! I didn’t really go to the gala. I was doing a little parody after reading all the reports about it. Just my crazy sense of humor here on this blog. As for the book, it comes out on February 3rd. You can pre-order it on amazon or wait until the 3rd. Either way, I’ll be grateful for the sale and curious about your reaction.

    Scott, thanks for your interest in the book too. I stopped by your blog and commented on your very first post. You do a great job, really writing from the heart.

    Hey, Mark. I’m with you on Springsteen. And Greg, I guess I compare Bruce and Bon Jovi because of the NJ roots. As for you, Prince, I don’t think Jon Boy is that bad. Actually, my husband laughs at me because I like some 70s-80s groups like Journey and Foreigner and Simply Red. That makes him barf. And don’t get him started on my Rhianna thing. My musical tastes are all over the place, while he’s a hardcore blues guy.

    Rad, no holdup on the book. Just the long publishing pipeline. I finished the manuscript last March. Now it’s in galleys. The publisher ships in January, and the video trailer we did will be distributed on YouTube, Yahoo, MSN, etc. (I’ll post it here.) Then we’re on sale Feb 3rd – in time for spring training, the opening of the new Stadium and all the rest. I’m nervous about it because my other books have been novels and this is my first nonfiction book. It’s kind of a baseball memoir, which means I’m my own heroine this time, flaws and all. Scary.

    Hi, Jenn. So you like the Yanks and the Phils? O.K. You’re allowed to have one favorite team in each league. But what if they faced each other in the WS? Then which one would you choose? (I think I know the answer.)

  11. Jane Heller

    I knew it, Jenn. You’re a Phillies girl deep down.

    Forgot about John “Cougar” Mellencamp, Steve. Definitely not on my iPod.

    Yeah, Prince, I saw that Simply Red was touring again. Poor Mick. He always looked like Carrot Top but at least he was in shape in the old days. And I remember he dated Steffi Graf for awhile, talk about useless trivia.

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