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La Russa Stands By Walking Turner: ‘That’s Not Even a Close Call’

On Thursday afternoon in Chicago, with the White Sox trailing the Dodgers 7–5 in the sixth inning, Chicago manager Tony La Russa elected to walk Los Angeles shortstop Trea Turner on a 1–2 count.

Instead of allowing lefthander Bennett Sousa to finish off the at-bat against Turner, La Russa changed his mind and walked Turner to set up a lefty-on-lefty matchup against Dodgers first baseman Max Muncy.

The decision backfired, as Muncy hit a three-run homer to break the game open. The White Sox ultimately fell 11–9.

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On Friday, La Russa doubled down on his decision.

“Psssh, 24 hours later I’m even more surprised,” La Russa said of the reaction to his decision.

“That’s not even a close call. I mean do you know what Muncy was hitting from the left-hand side this season? .125.

“Turner is a tough hitter with no strikes, one strike, two strikes. He shortens up and he’s got all kinds of ways to put the ball in play and hurt you. Now, if it had been a right-handed pitcher, yeah, I probably would have tried to make a pitch,” La Russa continued.

The 77-year-old La Russa has the White Sox sitting at 27–29 overall, and five games out of first place in the AL Central.

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