So why in the world did Adam LaRoche decide to retire and walk away from his $13 million salary in 2016? The reason might make a lot of folks cringe — especially those associated with the Chicago White Sox.
FOX Sports MLB Insider Ken Rosenthal reports LaRoche was unhappy that White Sox President Ken Williams told him he had to limit the time his 14-year-old son, Drake, spent with the team.
Sources: LaRoche chose to retire after #WhiteSox prez Ken Williams told him that he no longer could bring 14-year-old son into clubhouse.
Rosenthal spoke to Williams, who shared his side of the story:
"There has been no policy change with regards to allowance of kids in the clubhouse, on the field, the back fields during spring training. This young man that we’re talking about, Drake, everyone loves this young man. In no way do I want this to be about him. "I asked Adam, said, ‘Listen, our focus, our interest, our desire this year is to make sure we give ourselves every opportunity to focus on a daily basis on getting better. All I’m asking you to do with regard to bringing your kid to the ballpark is dial it back.’ "I don’t think he should be here 100 percent of the time – and he has been here 100 percent, every day, in the clubhouse. I said that I don’t even think he should be here 50 percent of the time. Figure it out, somewhere in between. "We all think his kid is a great young man. I just felt it should not be every day, that’s all. You tell me, where in this country can you bring your child to work every day? "I respect the man and his decision. I can’t disagree with what (Blaine Boyer) said about Adam as a person. But I take exception to the ‘evil’ part." Boyer said of LaRoche earlier: "He is an unbelievable husband, an unbelievable father, a friend you can only dream of. "I honestly think this is between good and evil. I know which side Adam lives on. I’m thankful to see the way he’s acting. It’s an unbelievable test of who he is, the husband he is, the father he is."
After the news of his retirement plans spread Tuesday, LaRoche sent this tweet, which features the "FamilyFirst" hashtag:
Thank u Lord for the game of baseball and for giving me way more than I ever deserved!#FamilyFirst
"On our side of things, I think everyone would say we enjoyed Drake LaRoche in the clubhouse and everything he brought to the clubhouse," White Sox outfielder Adam Eaton said. "He helped out around and wasn’t a burden by any stretch of the imagination. He wasn’t a big problem last year, either."
"Adam and Drake are probably the most respected people in baseball I ever played with. Drake would clean cleats, he would help out in drills, pick up baseballs when we needed, he didn’t say boo to anybody and was never a trouble in the clubhouse," he said.