Tony La Russa stepped down as Cardinals manager on October 31, calling it quits after 33 seasons, 2,728 wins, and three championships, but being retired won’t keep him from managing this year’s All-Star game.
Pennant-winning managers get the honor of managing the next season’s All-Star game and MLB announced that La Russa will manage the National League team in July.
And there should be plenty of Cardinals fans in attendance, as the game will be played at Kauffmann Stadium in Kansas City. And presumably they’ll make sure the bullpen phone is working.
In previous years when the pennant-winning skipper is unavailable to manage the All-Star game for whatever reason the league’s runner-up manager gets the nod, which would have been Ron Roenicke of the Brewers. However, there’s precedent for the La Russa situation, as Pirates manager Danny Murtaugh retired following a World Series win in 1971 and came back to manage the All-Star game in 1972.