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No timetable for ailing Tony La Russa’s return to Cardinals

May 11, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

St. Louis Cardinals v Arizona Diamondbacks Getty Images

Tony La Russa is expected to miss the Cardinals’ entire six-game road trip that began last night after leaving the team to have his shingles treated at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that the manager could miss “significantly more time.”

Strauss quotes a source who calls La Russa’s leave an “open-ended convalescence” rather than a predetermined absence and general manager John Mozeliak indicated that there’s no timetable for his return, saying: “We don’t have a real high level of confidence on that to know what the outlook looks like.”

Bench coach Joe Pettini, rather than longtime pitching coach Dave Duncan, will serve as acting manager while La Russa is out, but Strauss reports that he’s chosen not to use La Russa’s office “as a show of respect.”

La Russa has experienced eye swelling, diminished vision, and “excruciating pain … radiated from the eye to the back of his head.” Strauss writes that he “typically eschewed pain medication because it made him drowsy” but “Mozeliak, coaches, and some players pressed La Russa to seek more aggressive treatment.”

  1. giboxer5 - May 11, 2011 at 10:35 AM

    Karma for the weather ordeal during the previous reds series..I think so. Ever wonder how many wins this guy would have under his belt had he not been giving out steroids in Oakland, and HGH to Albert.. Tony is as big a face of the steroid era as his former players who will never see the hall. Coaching at its finest!!

    • Utley's Hair - May 11, 2011 at 11:41 AM

      Am I missing something here? Did I miss the memo that accused Pujols of using HGH? I’ll admit to being a less than stellar record keeper, but the only places I’ve seen mention of it are on this post and the fraternizing with Hendry one last night.

    • grizz2202 - May 11, 2011 at 3:11 PM

      Yeah, that’s right. Cause karma is really a big Cincy fan, and gives a rat’s butt what they do.

      Go outside. Breathe some fresh air. Stop berating your wife for five minutes and go see the sun for the first time in ages. Sounds like you could really use it. Breathing in all that cynical air and beating your kids every morning is doing you no good.

  2. RedHeadedBastard - May 11, 2011 at 10:42 AM

    Shingles is a form of Herpes. Therefore, La Russa has Herpes.

    • kinggeorge96 - May 11, 2011 at 11:33 AM

      Shingles is a form of Herpes, but not the same Herpes that you get on your junk… aka, sexually transmitted Herpes.. although he MAY have those Herpes as well.. Anyone want to ask the missus?

      Anyway, therefore La Russa has had Chickenpox…

      • raysfan1 - May 11, 2011 at 10:42 PM

        Truth–having previously had chicken pox is exactly how he became susceptible to having chicken pox. This is why kids should get vaccinated rather than letting them get the chicken pox–so they can develop shingles later. For those over age 60–go get the shingles vaccine too.

      • kinggeorge96 - May 12, 2011 at 9:31 AM

        You don’t have to tell me twice! My MIL is actually the head of the immunization department for Westchester County in NY, and she runs into people all the time that swear immunizations, not just for chicken pox, cause autism and all other types of ailments… When we were kids, there was no vaccine, I was shocked when my younger brother got a shot for it. Why suffer if you don’t have to… now and later?

  3. BC - May 11, 2011 at 11:16 AM

    Shingles are funky. I know people that have had them and shrugged them off, cleared up in a week or two. I know other people who are knocked for a loop for two months and can’t get out of bed.

    • cur68 - May 11, 2011 at 11:41 AM

      Yeah, BC, they are funky, with lots of funk. Young guys like you and me (in our 40’s) shrug them off not too bad. Old dudes like TLR really suffer. I know this is kind of amusing to think he’s afflicted with a herpes zoster virus but the poor man is in severe pain right now.

      This kind of thing is stress and immune system related. We all get stressed but young people have a way better immune system than the elderly. Since baseball stress is something he’s used to I’m going to inch out on a limb and say this is some sort of personal crisis that has increased his stress load.

      I’m not laughing at TLR and I’m glad to see you aren’t either. He’s really sick and I wish him well.

      • Utley's Hair - May 11, 2011 at 11:45 AM

        First, Utley has the knee clap…now LaRussa has herpes…damn irresponsible kids these days….

      • raysfan1 - May 11, 2011 at 10:38 PM

        Just adding–some elderly folks end up permanently disabled as the result of shingles. They can also develop post-herpetic neuralgia–essentially having severe pain for months after the shingles itself has resolved.

  4. Utley's Hair - May 11, 2011 at 11:44 AM

    “…but Strauss reports that he’s chosen not to use La Russa’s office “as a show of respect…”

    Why are they treating this like he’s dead?

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