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Love Him or Hate Him

by LS Murphy

The Cardinals appear to be on the brink of another postseason run. This team gels great with new additions Julio Lugo, Mark DeRosa, and Matt Holliday. With free agents a plenty, John Mozeliak will have a lot of work to do this winter. But there is one name that is more prominent than Holliday and DeRosa.
What’s next for Tony LaRussa? His contract is up at the end of this season. Many speculate that Tony will move on, possibly heading to the Reds to reunite with Walt Jocketty. That seems unlikely now that Scott Rolen has joined the Reds. Or he may call it a career and focus on his Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF). Or he may, as many Cards fans either hope for or fear, sign a deal to stay in St. Louis.
Since 1996, LaRussa has caused controversy and won baseball games in the Gateway City. He is both loved and hated. When the team wins, he is elevated to Whitey Herzog levels. When the teams loses, he becomes lower than the dirt under Busch Stadium. Every move the man makes gets criticized online, on-air, and at the watercooler on Monday mornings.
Yet, he goes out every night and does his job. He takes risks. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. Tony is the ideal employee. He does his job every game regardless of how underappreciated he may be after a huge win that showcased four rookies. He does his job even when the two hundredth different line up fails miserably. He is the ideal middle manager. He believes in his people. He gives them the opportunity to prove themselves day in and day out.
When his accomplishments are put into perspective, Tony LaRussa is the model baseball manager. He does his job. And he does it well.So, what will the off season bring for LaRussa? I, for one, hope a contract that will allow him to stay with the St. Louis Cardinals for the next three seasons, minimum.
Right now, though, Tony is more concerned with winning games and taking this team to the World Series. I think that most of us can handle the wait.


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Cardinals Mix blog featured writers LS Murphy,Brian F. Logush
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