Chicago White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf released a statement Sunday in what looks to be the end of the ongoing Adam and Drake LaRoche saga.
Reinsdorf said he met with Adam LaRoche and other White Sox personnel and added that employees of the team will be refraining from speaking publicly on the matter again, per Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune:
Here's Jerry Reinsdorf's full statement. pic.twitter.com/bdTatarcSo— Colleen Kane (@ChiTribKane) March 20, 2016
LaRoche retired from Major League Baseball earlier in the week, and Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal first reported the 36-year-old was walking away after team president Ken Williams told him he could no longer bring his son, Drake, into the team's clubhouse.
In a statement to Rosenthal, Williams offered his side, saying he merely wanted Drake LaRoche to spend less time around the team and instead instructed the former Silver Slugger to "dial it back."
White Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale spoke to what he and some of his teammates saw as a lack of proper communication between management and the players, per Fox Sports:
In front of Adam & Drake LaRoche jerseys, Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale blasted Vice-President Kenny Williamshttps://t.co/LHkVyG3WL6— FOX Sports (@FOXSports) March 19, 2016
According to LaRoche, Drake's involvement was a condition of his signing with the White Sox in the first place, which is why Williams' comments became a problem:
With all of this in mind, we move toward the current situation which arose after [Williams] recently advised me to significantly scale back the time that my son spent in the clubhouse. Later, I was told not to bring him to the ballpark at all. Obviously, I expressed my displeasure toward this decision to alter the agreement we had reached before I signed with the White Sox. Upon doing so, I had to make a decision. Do I choose my teammates and my career? Or do I choose my family? The decision was easy, but in no way was it a reflection of how I feel about my teammates, manager, general manager or [Reinsdorf].
On Saturday, Sale, for his part, had already moved on.
"We are here to play baseball, and collectively as a group we are doing that," he said, per Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago. "Hopefully when day one comes, we will be as good anyone. From yesterday forward, we are showing up to play baseball. I don't think there is anything else to talk about. We have a job to do and moving forward, that's what we are here for."
Looking ahead to Opening Day, Chicago is hoping to end its playoff drought, which has stretched to seven years.
While many expect the Kansas City Royals to once again be the class of the American League Central, the White Sox should be a serious contender for the top spot. In Sale, they have one of the game's best pitchers, and Jose Abreu, one of MLB's best sluggers, anchors the starting lineup.
Once the regular season begins and the White Sox are playing in meaningful games, Adam and Drake LaRoche will likely become less and less of a distraction for the team.