John Harper: La Russa Has Got To Get Suspended

As a manager, Tony La Russa was never afraid to get in someone’s face. Now an executive, nothing seems to have changed.

The fiery 71-year-old barged into the Pirates’ broadcast booth last Tuesday to chew out announcer Greg Brown, who had stated that La Russa was someone who believed in retaliation.

La Russa, for some reason, snapped.

“He’s got to get suspended, doesn’t he?” New York Daily News columnist John Harper said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “MLB wants to suspend everybody for everything now. This is the top executive of a team barging into the radio booth while the game is going on and getting on the guy. MLB has got to do something about that.”

La Russa won three World Series rings during his managerial career – one with Oakland (1989) and two with St. Louis (2006, 2011). A four-time Manager of the Year, La Russa was the definition of an old-school manager. It appears he’s brought that old-school attitude to the Diamondbacks’ front office.

“La Russa, to me, has always been kind of a bully,” Harper said. “He got away with it for years in St. Louis. He still thinks he can do whatever he wants.”

La Russa, when asked why he did what he did, said Brown was speaking “untruths” and that he wanted to hold Brown “responsible” for his “inaccuracies.”

“He was citing La Russa’s history as a guy who always believed in retaliation,” Harper said. “There’s nothing wrong with that. That’s the way the game has always been played. So I don’t know what got La Russa going, but you can’t be doing that when you represent a franchise.”

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