Chicago White Sox players contemplated boycotting Wednesday’s spring training game against the Milwaukee Brewers to support Adam LaRoche, reports ESPN.
White Sox president Ken Williams told LaRoche that he had to cut down on the time that his son spent in the team’s clubhouse. LaRoche then announced his decision to retire Tuesday after a 12-year career.
Manager Robin Ventura reportedly spoke with the players who were considering sitting out of the game and convinced them to play.
LaRoche’s 14-year-old son Drake has traveled with his father’s teams for several years. In a Chicago Tribune feature about LaRoche and his son last year, LaRoche referred to Drake as the team’s “26th man.” Drake goes to school in Kansas, but the school allows him and his sister Montana “to take weeks worth of homework with them when they’re on the road,” the Tribune reported.
Williams addressed the issue, noting that players’ children are still welcome in the clubhouse and on the field, but cannot consistently be with the team.
“There has been no policy change with regards to allowance of kids in the clubhouse, on the field, the back fields during spring training,” Williams said.
“I don’t think he should be here 100 percent of the time,” Williams said in reference to Drake. “And he has been here 100 percent, every day, in the clubhouse. I said that I don’t even think he should be here 50 percent of the time. Figure it out, somewhere in between.”
Sale told Williams, unequivocally, to get out of the clubhouse and stay out, per a source. Williams acknowledges meeting was passionate. 2/2— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 17, 2016
LaRoche still had one year left on his two-year, $25 million deal with the White Sox. A career .260 hitter, LaRoche had 255 home runs and 882 RBIs with the Braves, Pirates, Red Sox, Diamondbacks, Nationals and White Sox.