Tony La Russa Rejoins White Sox Amid Front Office Shakeup
Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa will rejoin the Chicago White Sox as a consultant after stepping away from his managing duties last season for health reasons. His return coincides with a massive shakeup within the organization, as owner Jerry Reinsdorf looks for a new general manager and other front office executives.
Reinsdorf surprised many around MLB Tuesday when he abruptly fired general manager Rick Hahn and Executive Vice President Kenny Williams. Both had been with the White Sox since the early 2000s, with Hahn taking over for Williams as general manager in 2012, but the owner expressed a desire for new leadership as the team struggles through another mediocre season.
“Ultimately, the well-worn cliché that professional sports is results-oriented is correct,” Reinsdorf said in a statement. “While we have enjoyed successes as an organization and were optimistic heading into the competitive window of this rebuild, this year has proven to be very disappointing for us all on many levels. This has led me to the conclusion that the best decision for the organization moving forward is to make a change in our baseball department leadership.”
Assistant general manager Chris Getz is reportedly expected to replace Hahn as the organization’s de facto decision maker in the front office. But with La Russa returning in an outside role, having already scouted the team’s farm system as part of his return, questions about the manager position linger. Rookie manager Pedro Grifol seems to have the position for now, but he also met with Reinsdorf and La Russa to discuss Chicago’s future Wednesday night.
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Despite entering the season with reasonably high expectations, the White Sox currently hold a 50-77 record and are fourth in the Al Central, the weakest division in baseball. They are almost certain to regress on their 81-81 season in 2022 at a time when they were expected to improve as young talented players continue to develop.
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