CHICAGO – Everyone around baseball woke up with sadness on Friday morning at the news of the death of one of the most charismatic managers in the history of the game.
Tommy Lasorda died at the age of 93 of heart failure on Friday and tributes to the manager have been pouring in since the announcement.
That included from Chicago’s baseball teams, especially the Cubs, who faced Lasorda’s Dodgers often when he managed Los Angeles from 1977-1996.
The Cubs put up this picture montage on Twitter of the manager during a couple of his visits to Wrigley Field during and after his career.
Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts released a statement on behalf of the club on Friday afternoon.
“Tommy positively influenced countless players from all over the world and proudly represented the game of baseball across the country and abroad,” said Ricketts. “He was known to always bleed ‘Dodger Blue,’ and today we mourn alongside the Dodgers and their passionate fans. Tommy’s accomplishments throughout the game will never be forgotten.”
The White Sox never faced Lasorda in a regular season game in which he managed, since his tenure predated Interleague Play. That’s not the case for new manager Tony La Russa, who was managing the Oakland Athletics when they met the Dodgers in the 1988 World Series.
He shared his thoughts on Lasorda on Twitter Friday afternoon.
“Tommy is in the conversation of greatest managers. He was an outstanding ambassador for baseball that influenced and entertained fans everywhere,” said La Russa in the tweet. “He also was a great leader and championship game strategist. Gone but will never be forgotten!”