It’s official. Earlier today, in a press conference at Busch Stadium, the announcement was made. Tony La Russa will return as the manager of the St. Louis Cardinals. The club and manager have agreed to a two year deal, which keeps Tony around at least through the ’09 season.
“One (year) is the wrong message, because from spring training on it’s the same deal,” La Russa said. “Two (years) lets the players know I’m back for” a longer stay.
La Russa became the winningest manager in franchise history earlier this year, and has accumulated 1055 wins in his 12 seasons with the Cardinals. He also led the club to the postseason seven times, with two National League pennants, and it’s first World Championship in twenty-four years.
This deal lets me know what to expect from the Cards for the next couple of years. It means that the club will do everything it can to stay competitive. Tony needs to win, and is too old to suffer through a rebuilding season or two. The signing comes as no surprise. The team has signed three pitchers since the end of the season, all of which were coveted by La Russa. This also might indicate that John Mozeliak will keep the GM job. He’s already very familiar with Tony, and his preferences in the makeup of a roster.
The Post Dispatch has more on the La Russa signing here.