CHICAGO (Reuters) – Manager Tony La Russa signed a two-year contract to stay with the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday, removing his name from a list of possible candidate to replace Joe Torre at the New York Yankees.
The third most successful manager in Major League history, La Russa had been mentioned as a potential replacement for Torre, who turned down the Yankees one-year $5 million dollar last week.
Following a disappointing 78-84 season there had been speculation that La Russa was considering leaving St. Louis but he decided to remain with the Cardinals after taking a few weeks off.
“I think we were all toast,” La Russa told a news conference at Busch Stadium. “So I had to get away.
“Then you start understanding the strength of the relationships in the clubhouse and in the organization.
“If people still want you to be a part of it, then you’re excited to be part of it.”
In 12 years as Cardinals’ manager, La Russa has posted a record of 1,055 wins and 887 losses and sits third on Major League Baseball’s all-timer managerial win list with 2,375.
La Russa, who also had lengthy stints with the Chicago White Sox and Oakland Athletics, guided the Cardinals to seven post-season appearances, two National League pennants and the 2006 World Series title.
He joins Sparky Anderson as the only managers in Major League history to take teams to World Series championships in both the American and National League.
The 63-year-old also has a trophy case bursting with individual honors, having been voted AL manger of the year in 1983, 1988 and 1992 and NL manager of the year in 2002.