— Tony La Russa is stepping down as Chicago White Sox manager because of health concerns that kept him out of the dugout for the final five weeks of the season, he announced in a statement released Monday.
La Russa, who will turn 78 on Tuesday, hasn’t managed a game since abruptly leaving Guaranteed Rate Field on Aug. 30 after doctors told him he needed to undergo further testing related to a heart issue.
According to La Russa on Monday, there was an issue with the pacemaker he had implanted in February that forced him to step away from the team. During his absence, a second issue was diagnosed, forcing him to take an indefinite leave.
He was under contract through the 2023 season.
“At no time this season did either issue negatively affect my responsibilities as White Sox manager,” La Russa said in the statement. “However, it has become obvious that the length of the treatment and recovery process for this second health issue makes it impossible for me to be the White Sox manager in 2023. The timing of this announcement now enables the front office to include filling the manager position with their other off-season priorities.”
La Russa also noted that his “overall prognosis is good, and I want to thank everyone who has reached out to me with well wishes related to my health.”