Wearing a white polo shirt and a Diamondbacks cap pulled low, Tony La Russa stood between two practice fields, where a pair of minor-league games were unfolding simultaneously. Glancing in front of him, La Russa talked about a catcher he likes with a nice-looking swing. He then motioned to the other field, where there was a third baseman he said might have a chance.
To many, La Russa’s presence at Diamondbacks camp this year is unexpected. Stripped of his powers atop baseball operations at the end of last year’s disappointing season, La Russa did what, it seems, few would have: He stuck around.
He says that, by and large, his spring has been like any other he spent with the organization. He watches players and teams and he evaluates them. He spends time with coaches and the front office. The difference is he no longer has the same responsibility.
And, on the surface, he seems no different as a result. He arrives at Salt River Fields early. He sits in on meetings. He watches batting practice, chatting with front office executives and coaches. And he watches the games, either on the back fields or in the main stadium, sometimes from the scouts’ section.
Read more at dbacks.azcentral.com