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The Chicago White Sox lost to the New York Yankees for many reasons, but Tony La Russa didn’t help matters.
With the White Sox and Yankees tied at a run apiece going into the bottom of the ninth inning in the Bronx, La Russa opted to bypass his closer, Liam Hendriks, who was already warming up in the bullpen. Instead, the veteran manager tabbed Evan Marshall, who had an ERA of 6.45 entering Friday’s action. As you can imagine, that frame didn’t go according to plan for the South Siders.
La Russa was hoping to use Hendriks in the 10th inning, but that strategy has proven incorrect multiple times with the new extra inning format, despite the latter frame being a tougher spot to enter a game. Getting through 3-4-5 in the Yankees lineup is no easy task for a pitcher struggling like Marshall clearly is. Meanwhile, this is precisely why the White Sox acquired Hendriks in the first place.
Yankees had luck on their side in the Bronx
While La Russa’s decision-making has come under fire this week, and for good reason, it’s tough to blame him for the White Sox hitting into a triple-play in the top of the ninth inning.
Nonetheless, his insistence not to back his own player in Yermin Mercedes earlier this week could have further consequences later down the line this season should the White Sox struggle at any point.
At 76 years of age, the White Sox aren’t paying La Russa to be part of the problem. Hopefully, after a tough week, he can get it together.