Chicago White Sox, San Francisco Giants

White Sox would’ve gone after Bruce Bochy if they didn’t get Tony La Russa

Bruce Bochy could’ve been the next manager of the White Sox.

Very rarely is hiring a future Hall of Famer derided from every corner of the baseball world, but Jerry Reinsdorf’s Chicago White Sox hiring 76-year-old Tony La Russa was considered extremely controversial due to the perception he is out of touch with the modern game. Even if La Russa turned Chicago down, their backup plan was also a bit long in the tooth.

Bob Nightengale is reporting that if the White Sox were unable to seal the deal with La Russa, Reinsdorf was prepared to bring former San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy out of retirement.

While La Russa spent most of the last decade retired, Bruce Bochy won three championships

Bochy, who managed the San Diego Padres and brought the franchise their only NL Pennant in 1998, took over the Giants in 2007. Blending expert bullpen managing with solid in-game awareness, Bochy won three World Series titles between 2010 and 2014 despite a lineup that usually lacked a transformative offensive star.

While Bochy did establish a modern dynasty, he did start to slip up near the end of his tenure, as he ended his career with three straight losing seasons before retiring after 2019. Reinsdorf was clearly not kidding about hiring a manager with championship experience, but he apparently doesn’t see the fact his team is very young and lively, and an older manager might not be the best move at this juncture.

Bochy ended his career with much less success than he is used to, but he’d won three championship sin five seasons while somewhat adapting to the modern MLB and relating to younger players. Bochy wouldn’t be the most popular choice, but it would certainly be a more traditional and safe hire than La Russa.

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