From the moment the Arizona Diamondbacks named Tony La Russa their Chief Baseball Officer, speculation ran rampant with regards to the job security of GM Kevin Towers and manager Kirk Gibson.
After all, it’s likely La Russa wouldn’t have even been brought on board had the D-backs not struggled so mightily early in the 2014 season, and many believe the team’s skipper and/or GM are responsible.
But instead of letting go of Towers or Gibson, Derrick Hall and the team decided it would be best to add La Russa.
“One of the reasons we made the decision we did was because we didn’t want a lot of disruption,” the team president told Doug and Wolf on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Thursday morning. “We wanted to, this early in the season, you hate to be knee-jerk in April.”
In a way, the timing just didn’t seem right to make wholesale changes.
“You’ve got a draft coming up, you’ve got a trade deadline coming up, you want people here that understand your personnel as you try and figure out where to move forward directionally with this organization, and that’s really going to be an evaluation that Tony’s going to have to make,” he said. “I think right now he’s being very methodical, as he should be, and he’s just trying to get a good lay of the land, and I expect that process to take a little time.”
The draft is slated to begin on June 5, and the MLB non-waiver trade deadline is July 31. Up to this point, La Russa has spent much of his time touring the organization’s farm system in order to get a better feel for the overall structure and talent level.
So it’s understandable why La Russa didn’t just come in and clean house. But whether or not he will decide to do so at some point is something even Hall doesn’t really know.
“I can’t predict what he’s going to conclude, but I know that he’s going to do what’s in the best interest of the organization,” Hall said. “And he’s a winner. This guy knows what it takes to win. He knows he’s going to get the right people around him, whether they’re already here or he has to go out and recruit them.
“But I’m confident in his ability and his intelligence and his competitiveness.”