{}
CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

Ausmus voices respect for HOF inductee La Russa

|
Ausmus voices respect for HOF inductee La Russa play video for Ausmus voices respect for HOF inductee La Russa

PHOENIX -- Brad Ausmus is no stranger to soon-to-be Hall of Famer Tony La Russa.

The current Tigers manager and former A's and Cardinals skipper saw each other plenty of times from opposing dugouts while La Russa still ran the Cardinals and Ausmus was playing for the division-rival Astros.

"Just because of the nature of the Cardinal-Astro civil rivalry, I knew Tony for years," Ausmus said. "Not personally, but [I] always had interaction with him. Being in the same division, we played against each other a lot. We played in the playoffs a lot."

The one meeting that stuck out to Ausmus came when La Russa, who will be inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday in Cooperstown, N.Y., sent him a note after Ausmus' Astros defeated the Cardinals in the 2005 National League Championship Series.

"The clubhouse guy came over into our celebration and handed me a piece of paper, and it was a note from Tony saying, 'Congratulations, Brad,'" Ausmus said. "I still have it. I kept it.

"He had just lost the NLCS, and he took the time. I know he sent one to Jeff Bagwell and [Craig] Biggio and myself -- individual ones."

Ausmus said he has always liked the way La Russa's teams played.

"They played the game the right way and they were respectful of the other team," Ausmus said. "There wasn't a lot of pomp and circumstance. They just played baseball."

La Russa is currently helping run the D-backs in the front office as the club's chief baseball officer, a position Ausmus said he wasn't surprised La Russa took, adding that it was the "logical next step."

Adam Lichtenstein is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{}
{}
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español