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NEW YORK (AP) — George Steinbrenner was suspended from baseball for trying to disgrace his high-paid outfielder, Dave Winfield.
A low point for "The Boss," for sure. But rather than let the episode fade away, the Yankees owner reached out nearly a decade later to repair the rift.
For those who knew Steinbrenner, behind a feisty facade was a fiercely loyal friend.
"It's almost like you see a curtain drawn back, a veil lifted, just a complete change," Winfield said of Steinbrenner after the reconciliation. "And our relationship changed from then on. And we got to know each other real well. I know that over the years, he admired me, he respected me and he liked me. And I did the same with him. It was very important."
The 80-year-old Steinbrenner died in Tampa, Fla., early Tuesday after having a heart attack. He was remembered as much for his dictatorial style as he was for his generosity.
"I think he's a father figure to everyone that was in our organization in the past or present, because he really took care of his players," Yankees captain Derek Jeter said.
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