The Journal News of White Plains, N.Y., citing two unnamed sources, said the Dodgers have decided to fire manager Grady Little. Torre, 67, could replace him as soon as Tuesday, the newspaper said.
Yankees coach Don Mattingly, who was told Monday he was a runnerup to Joe Girardi as the team's choice to replace Torre, is expected to accompany Torre to Los Angeles as his bench coach, The Journal News said. Torre is also interested in hiring Kevin Long, his hitting coach with the Yankees.
The Dodgers were 82-80 this season under Little and were beset by clubhouse unrest. Owner Frank McCourt, a Boston native, decided Torre is best suited to quell that situation, the paper said.
On Monday, however, Torre seemed to contradict that report during an appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. The talk show host asked Torre directly if he might be headed to Los Angeles.
"Maybe Dodgers, maybe Angels?" Letterman asked.
"Well, the Dodgers have a contract, I mean, a manager," Torre replied. "The Angels have a very good manager."
Torre was referring to Dodgers' Little and Angels' field boss Mike Scioscia.
Torre went on to say: "That's a bad question to ask. I know what's been rumored. The local paper today is talking about going to LA. There has been a time or two that something that has been in the newspaper hasn't been true."
There have been previous reports speculating Torre could be hired to replace Little, who has one year remaining on his contract with a club option for a second year.
The Dodgers, from team owner Frank McCourt on down, declined comment late Monday.
The 67-year-old Torre managed the Yankees to 12 playoff appearances in as many seasons before turning down a one-year, $5 million offer for next season, with an additional $3 million in incentives, earlier this month.
Torre, who completed a three-year, $19.2 million contract this year, ranks eighth on baseball's all-time list with 2,067 victories and has won a record 76 postseason games.
Little, the Dodgers' skipper the past two seasons, managed the Boston Red Sox in 2002-03 before being fired despite two playoff appearances.
The Dodgers had baseball's best record in July but faded down the stretch to finish with an 82-80 record, good for fourth place in the NL West.
Clubhouse unrest surfaced between veterans and young players during the season's final two weeks, when the Dodgers lost seven straight games to the Colorado Rockies while falling out of contention.