Can Tony La Russa Get Out of This One?

Tony La Russa was arrested for a DUI in Florida this morning.

La Russa’s SUV was stopped at a light that, according to police, went through two cycles of green. A driver behind La Russa had to go around his vehicle, police said.

Police found La Russa slumped over in the driver’s seat of the running SUV. The manager of the world champion Cardinals had his foot on the brake and did not respond to knocks on the window, police said. He finally woke up and parked the car.

Police said they noticed the smell of alcohol on his breath, and a field sobriety test was conducted.

The 62-year-old LaRussa was sent to the Palm Beach County Jail around 4 a.m., according to the jail’s Web site. La Russa provided breath samples, which measured at a .093 blood alcohol level, police said. The legal limit for drivers in Florida is 0.08.

While 0.93 is low for a DUI—I am NOT excusing is, just pointing it out—his behavior seems to be consistent with someone who should have known not to get behind the wheel.

I wonder if TLR will have the same influence with the court as he does with umpires. In Chapter 4 of The Baseball Economist, I examine the influence of different managers on ball and strike calls, inside and outside of Questec-monitored parks. The idea is that without Questec ball and strike monitoring, managers can exhibit more influence over umpires. I find that while most managers don’t have much persuasive power over umps, La Russa raises the strikeout-to-walk ratio of his pitchers outside of Questec parks. Maybe it’s his lawyering skills; he needs them now.

2 Responses “Can Tony La Russa Get Out of This One?”

  1. brett barton says:


    on a lighter note, the Braves inked McCann to 6 year/$26.8 million contract. good work.

  2. Kent says:

    It’s inconclusive whether or not LaRussa’s driving was affected by the alcohol. It could just be that he is a bad driver. If driving abilities are dispersed across a power law distribution, then we would expect some really bad drivers.