Big names to be on hand for La Russa event

Big names to be on hand for La Russa event

PHOENIX -- Friday's pregame ceremony to retire the number of former manager Tony La Russa is set to begin at 7 p.m. CT, prior to the Cardinals' series opener against Atlanta. The festivities have pushed back the scheduled first pitch to 7:25 pm.

La Russa's No. 10 will be the 12th number retired by the Cardinals and the first since 2010. He retired after the 2011 season and is the winningest manager in franchise history. More than two dozen baseball personalities will be in attendance to honor La Russa.

Those include Mike Shannon (who will emcee the event), Dennis Eckersley, Dave Stewart, Bob Welch, Wally Haas, Jerry Reinsdorf, Roland Hemond, Tom Seaver, Joe Torre, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock, Matt Morris, David Eckstein, Brian Jordan, Jim Edmonds, Andy Benes, Alan Benes, Walt Jocketty, Dave Duncan, Barry Weinberg, Carole Buck (wife of the late Jack Buck), Red Schoendienst, Greg Walker and Scott Fletcher.

Owner Bill DeWitt Jr., team president Bill DeWitt III, general manager John Mozeliak, manager Mike Matheny, hitting coach Mark McGwire, as well as players Adam Wainwright, Chris Carpenter and Yadier Molina will also be a part of the ceremony.

Separate of Friday's celebration at Busch Stadium, Nikco Sports, is marketing 2,012 limited edition baseballs autographed by La Russa. The baseballs are available for $99, and $37 of each sale will be donated to La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation.

These baseballs, which are available on a first-come basis, are available for purchase at Nikco Sports' website or by calling 1-800-345-2868.