In a dramatic turn of events following the firing of Rick Renteria, the White Sox announced today that they have hired Tony Larussa to take the reins of the young team.
The White Sox said they wanted a manager with recent championship experience. Larussa has won championships, but his last was in 2011, as was his last game as a manager.
The Sox also said they wanted a manager who would embrace analytics. Let’s take a look at how Tony feels about it:
“But once the analytics intrude into the competition — by that I mean if your manager or your head coach somehow has his hands tied because the organization believes that strikeouts don’t matter, the manufacturing game, hit-and-run, sacrifice, you don’t want to lose outs — those thoughts, you want to handle the bullpen according to some organized printout, then you actually — I wish all teams were like that, they’d be easier to beat.”
Doesn’t exactly sound like a guy who is on board.
How about managing a team with lots of young Black players who are really good, as MLB pays lip service to Black Lives Matter and other organizations devoted to racial equality? Surely he can relate to this, right?
I know that there’s a constitutional right to express yourself, but I think you have a right as an organization to have a certain philosophy about respecting, whether it’s our Constitution, whether it’s our country, whether it’s our soldiers…our flag. I would not, to the best of my ability, I would not sanction somebody taking a knee.
“I think that’s disrespectful, and I really question the sincerity of somebody like Kaepernick. I remember when he was on top. I never heard him talk about anything but himself. Now all of a sudden he’s struggling for attention and he makes this big pitch. I don’t buy it. And even if he was sincere, there are other ways to show your concern. Disrespecting our flag is not the way to do it.“
Great. But at least he has been out of the game long enough to not have any of the stink of sign stealing that AJ Hinch would have, right?
But at least he’ll run a tight ship, stressing accountability in the clubhouse, right?
Mind you, we haven’t even gotten into the PED abuse that has followed him around throughout his managerial career.
In summary, I don’t think there is a manager alive who is more ill-suited to take this team to the next level, and there’s little to no doubt that this decision was made in spite of what Sox GM Rick Hahn thought.
The decision was all Jerry Reinsdorf, and it’s tantamount to buying a Ferrari to run at LeMans, then putting Gary Busey behind the wheel.
Or if Busey isn’t available, Tony Larussa.