Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa confirmed his retirement Monday and revealed that a second health condition has led to him leaving his post with one year remaining on his contract.
Multiple outlets have reported in recent days that La Russa intended to step aside. He has not managed the team since Aug. 30, citing a health concern.
The Hall of Fame manager, who turns 78 on Tuesday, not only confirmed that he had received a pacemaker in February and learned Aug. 30 that the device was defective, he revealed that a second, unnamed health condition was discovered.
"At no time this season did either issue negatively affect my responsibilities as White Sox manager," La Russa said in a lengthy statement released through the team. "However, 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.
"The timing of this announcement now enables the front office to include filling the manager position with their other offseason priorities."
A surprise choice as manager before the 2021 season, La Russa guided the White Sox to a 93-69 record and an appearance in the American League Division Series last year, where they were eliminated in four games by the Houston Astros.
Upon rejoining the White Sox, La Russa was returning as a manager for the first time since 2011. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.
With high expectations this season, the White Sox have gone 79-80 heading into the final week of the season and already have been eliminated from playoff contention.
"Our team's record this season is the final reality. It is an unacceptable disappointment," La Russa said in his statement. "There were some pluses, but too many minuses. In the major leagues, you either do or you don't. Explanations come across as excuses. Respect and trust demand accountability, and during my managerial career, I understood that the ultimate responsibility for each minus belongs to the manager."
The White Sox have gone 172-149 the past two seasons since La Russa returned to the club. He also managed the White Sox from 1979-86. In 37 seasons as a major league manager, the three-time World Series champion has guided his teams to a 2,900-2,514 record.
In addition to his two stints with the White Sox, La Russa also managed the Oakland Athletics (1986-95) and the St. Louis Cardinals (1996-2011). The A's won the 1989 World Series, while the Cardinals won titles in 2006 and 2011.
--Field Level Media