While most athletes and managers likely would like to go out on top, very few get the opportunity to do so. But it appears as if Tony La Russa, fresh off of winning his second World Series title in St. Louis, will do just that. La Russa who joined the Cardinals in 1996, after stints with the Chicago White Sox and the Oakland A's (where he won his first championship in 1989), has decided to retire.
La Russa will depart baseball with the third most regular season victories ever for a manager (2,728), and he will leave the Cardinals as the franchise's leader in wins. La Russa's identity and personality has defined the Cardinals throughout the years, and it will undoubtedly be jarring for the franchise to move on to another skipper. And of course, there will be much hand-wringing over how La Russa's exit will influence Albert Pujols' free agency, as the Cardinals' legendary slugger was very close with his now erstwhile manager.
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