It was 34 years ago that the Chicago White Sox fired manager Tony La Russa. Most of the players on the current White Sox roster were not even born yet. Now, they will be privileged to have a legitimate MLB Hall of Fame coach to be their guide and manager going forward, as La Russa is back with his old squad once again.
La Russa Returns To The White Sox
Tony La Russa is a Major League Baseball legend. Baseball being what it is, La Russa has been a winner and he’s been fired, but he has always been quite a character and one of the faces that has shaped the modern day league. He won a World Series back in 1989 while managing the Oakland A’s, then he won two more World Series Championship Titles with the St. Louis Cardinals. La Russa has “been there and done that” as much as any other figure in modern baseball history.
When La Russa won his second World Series in 2006 with the Cardinals, he joined his mentor, Sparky Anderson, as only the second manager to win a title with teams in both leagues. So now, at the ripe age of 76, Tony La Russa has gone full circle and ended up back where he started some 40 years ago, to Chicago and the White Sox’s dugout.
White Sox Determined To Get World Series Win
White Sox GM Rick Hahn told the press, “We are extremely excited about the future of this team. As we showed in 2020, this is a young, talented club that we expect to only grow better and better in the coming years. Adding in a Hall of Fame manager who is recognized as being one of the best in the history of the game, we are a step closer to our goal of bringing White Sox fans another championship.”
Now winning his fourth World Series is La Russa’s mandate from the White Sox front office, and the baseball world is watching closely to see if the old champ can shape these talented young men into a unified baseball team that knows how to win games, and championships. The White Sox made it to the MLB playoffs this year, advancing to the Wild Card round, for the first time since 2008, showing that they do have the talent and the desire to go all the way sometime soon in the future.
La Russa, who now becomes the oldest manager in the majors, said about his motivations in accepting this job, “It was very difficult to sit and think about what’s going on downstairs. It’s always more fun downstairs. My heart was always in the dugout.” At 76, Tony still wants to go where it is the most fun.
Chicago’s Glad To Have La Russa Back
La Russa has served in the front office for various teams since 2014, the same year that he was enshrined in the MLB Hall of Fame at Cooperstown, and his numbers are hard to take in at first sight. He has won six pennants over 33 seasons with the White Sox, the Oakland A’s and the Cardinals, and has 2,728 wins to 2,365 losses. The man has played a lot of baseball.
He was fired by these same White Sox in 1986 after the team got off to a slow start. White Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf remains close friends with La Russa and is said to have long regretted allowing that move. Now they are back together. The baseball world will be watching the White Sox closely now. One thing for sure is that the young players on the Chicago roster are in for the experience of a lifetime.