While under control during his post-game remarks, La Russa was very upset; not at his team, but at perceived inconsistency demonstrated by the home plate umpire, Dale Scott, as well as the actions of the Atlanta Braves based on what La Russa saw as their constant complaining during the game. Neither Manager Bobby Cox, nor his staff were mentioned by name.
Now to Tony, live, but censored.
"My argument with Dale was that he had an aggressive zone all game long and then he lost his aggressiveness. I mean, Mondesi was out twice and the same pitches that were strikes all day long…
"The biggest problem, and I will tell you, I will praise the Atlanta Braves as much as anybody… The only thing they're not to be respected for is how they piss and moan about every fricking play. It's so one-sided. But, sooner or later, it's almost like a strategy, they're going to beat the umpires down. It is really B.S. and beneath the class of their organization.
"It's a fricking joke. They argue about every xxx xxxx thing. Orr is in the league two months or one month and he is pissing and moaning about a called strike. They are a classy organization, but that is the one exception. They piss and moan. Every xxxxxxx thing that is called. And then they don't get a pitch…
"They beat the umpires down. May be that's their strategy. But, they're not to be admired for it – not to be copied.
"Every game they play; even when it's going their way. I can't stay clear of that, man. Everything else they do is first class. You can emulate them. But not that. That is B.S.
"It's not the first time. Today is the latest time it's happened. It's a joke. They had to win that game a different way from the way they won it – from the way they tied it.
"We were stuck at two runs and we couldn't do anything about it. Part of our not scoring any more was because he (Scott) had such an aggressive strike zone against us.
"We were playing with an aggressive strike zone; then all of a sudden it wasn't there. That was a key time. It was a strike-em-out, throw-em-out double play right there (in the home seventh).
"The Braves do it and nobody seems to go back at them. Like the Baltimore Orioles – the old Weaver days. It's a xxxx of a strategy. It's B.S.
"As much pride as the umpires have, I can't believe that every fricking game that they don't send a message back to that club."
"He would have pitched the ninth if we had been ahead. But, I didn't want to pitch him two innings. That's what it was going to take. I assume we would have scored in the tenth."
"He did exactly what he needed to do and that was play for today. He did an outstanding job. Reyes deserved better and Flores was incredible."
On Reyes getting hot
"He's supposed to get hot. You're trying to win a game. The fricking Braves get hot."
On Pujols gesturing toward Scott at the end of the game
"He ought to let me challenge them and just play baseball."
Brian Walton can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.