Sports Law Blog
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Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Tony La Russa -- A Lawyer?

It turns out that the answer to that question is yes. La Russa did go to law school and passed the bar exam. He never actually practiced law, though, because he began coaching in the major leagues almost immediately.

It also turns out that he has some legal advice for Mark McGwire, who like Rafael Palmeiro, is considering a lawsuit against Jose Canseco for defamation, based on the claims Canseco made in his book that McGwire, Palmeiro and others used performance-enhancing drugs. His advice: don't bother.
    "I vaguely remember law school, but I remember that when you start getting into libel and slander, that's one of the toughest proofs in the world," La Russa said Friday. "It is so difficult. ... The players can do whatever they want to, but you've got to think long and hard before you make that investment."
La Russa may be far-removed from Con Law, but I have to agree with his advice. As tempting as it may be to take every penny Canseco has, it is probably not worth the trouble of a lawsuit. Besides, although it sold quickly thanks to early publicity, I have a feeling that this book will soon be relegated to bargain bins and trash cans. Ball Four, it is not.