White Sox manager Tony La Russa announced he is officially stepping down due to multiple health issues. Since August, La Russa has not managed the team; initially his health issue was described as updating a pacemaker that he had installed in February. However. La Russa said that while he was sidelined, the doctors discovered a different health issue that he did not disclose. La Russa, who turns 78 today, said the health concerns haven’t impacted his ability to manage, but hinder his ability to return.
The veteran manager wrote in a statement: “It has become obvious that the length of the treatment and recovery process for this second health issue makes it impossible for me to be the White Sox manager in 2023 .. I was hired to provide positive, difference-making leadership and support,” he said. “Our record is proof. I didn’t do my job.”
Chicago went 172–149 under La Russa, winning the AL Central in 2021 but missing the playoffs this season. La Russa spent much of the 2022 season with fans chanting “Fire Tony” during games after they were unhappy with his decision-making. Said La Russa: “At no time have I been disappointed or upset with White Sox fans, including those who at times chanted ‘Fire Tony’. They come to games with passion for our team and a strong desire to win.” The White Sox made the playoffs in 2021 under La Russa, which included hosting two playoff games against the Astros.
As for the future of the White Sox, La Russa said he believes the “future for this team remains bright … I still appreciate the chance to come back home to the White Sox and leave today with many more good memories than disappointments. As I have said many times during my career, no manager has ever had more good fortune than I have.”
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