Surveying The La Russa Strategic Carnage
Another signature La Russa strategy that has become commonplace is the batter-by-batter bullpen management. LaRussa, to some, micromanages his relievers and who they face. La Russa, to some, is an evil man who took baseball out of an era when Manly Men-Warriors like Jack Morris and Bob Gibson and Nolan Ryan threw complete games 30 times a season.
This perception of La Russa, like the perception of the predominance of complete-game-throwers in an earlier era, is flawed. But is does inspire passion.
And so, when La Russa’s bullpen marionette manipulator scheme goes awry in a tied Game 5 of a tied World Series…the critics get their lumps in. Some questionable baserunning decisions can also be linked to questionable decisions made by La Russa. He’s fair game after that farcical display from St. Louis.
A warning to all baseball lovers: Be cautious in bashing Tony LaRussa. There are at least 9 innings, and hopefully more, remaining in this World Series. There is still plenty of time for him to make us all look like dunces.