After a combination of bad luck, bad decisions, bad performances and bad injuries (as opposed to good injuries? ah, shuddup – I like parallelism), the Arizona Diamondbacks stood at 16-28, one of the worst records in baseball, as of this morning. So, the organization decided to act, and they went with one of the biggest names in the game: Tony La Russa.
The former big league manager and MLB executive is headed for the Hall of Fame this Summer, and is now headed for the Chief of Baseball Operations chair with the Diamondbacks. In so creating the new position, the Diamondbacks have effectively neutered the baseball control of GM Kevin Towers, who directed a handful of questionable moves over the past two years. You have to wonder if this is the first step in his departure from the organization.
Here’s the statement the team released on the hiring, which came from team CEO (and La Russa’s boss) Derrick Hall:
The entire organization is obviously frustrated with the results on the field and we are looking to improve. Tony brings us a wealth of knowledge, experience and success, and will work closely with Kevin and Kirk in evaluating our current state to determine the future of our baseball operations. He is excited and enthusiastic about the challenge, and we are fortunate to have this Hall of Famer on board and a part of the team.
The move has no direct implications for the Chicago Cubs, but it’s interesting for the baseball landscape, nevertheless. La Russa is a smart baseball man, but it will be interesting to see how he operates at the head of a front office. La Russa turns 70 later this year.