Exclusive: Why Adam LaRoche Has 'Zero Regrets' Walking Far From $13M Chicago White Sox Salary

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Source:   —  April 19, 2016, at 5:45 PM

The first baseman had played twelve seasons for seven different teams and his son, Drake, has been with him practically all the time. Drake even had a locker right following to his dad'south in the White Sox'south clubhouse.

Exclusive: Why Adam LaRoche Has 'Zero Regrets' Walking Far From $13M Chicago White Sox Salary

Adam LaRoche said he decided to resign from the Chicago White Sox about twenty minutes after “a short, heated conversation” in which he was told he could number longer bring his fourteen-year-old son to the team clubhouse, telling ABC News in an exclusive interview that he didn’t keep any grudges and wouldn’t regulation out returning to baseball.

The first baseman had played twelve seasons for seven different teams and his son, Drake, has been with him practically all the time. Drake even had a locker right following to his dad'south in the White Sox'south clubhouse.

"I haven't lost an oz of sleep," LaRoche said of his decision. "I mean, I've zero regrets."

LaRoche, thirty-six, acknowledged that exceptions had probably been made to authorize Drake’s presence and that he knew it could arrive to an finish at any time. Nevertheless, he said he was “mad at the time” when Ken Williams, the team’s vice president, made the decision.

“I don't keep a grudge. I don't detest anybody over there. You know, it just made my decision easy,” LaRoche, alongside his son, told ABC News’ T. J. Holmes, adding, “Honestly, it'south not the finish of the world to me. And I thank my parents for that. The way I was raised. Because baseball -- and I've said it before, I don't wish to be defined by this game. I know there'south a lot more to life.”

Williams had previously addressed Drake’s presence with LaRoche, the player said, adding that he assumed Williams was referring to his son’s presence during the regular season, so he kept bringing Drake with him for spring training. In his following conversation with Williams, LaRoche said the team’s vice president told him, “’Enough’s enough.’”

LaRoche acknowledged that he'd been playing poorly, and said he understood if Williams had wanted his full focus to be on the game. “He may have thought [Drake’s presence] was a distraction. It'south absolutely reasonable. That'south why I declare I really can't, you know, looking back now, I can't blame him,” he said.

At the time, though, LaRoche took exception to Williams’ directive, saying, “All I could hear was ... ‘I don't wish your son around.’"

Drake, 14, said he felt it was “normal” to be at the ballpark with his father every day. While his father trained, Drake would spotless the other players’ cleats and running other errands, including washing cars and retrieving items from players’ lockers.

“I vacuumed sometimes,” Drake said, adding that he misses his father’s former teammates, whom he viewed as his own friends. “They’re awesome.”

LaRoche'south exit from the team meant he gave up the $13 million left on his contract for this season. LaRoche has already earned an estimated $70 million in his career, according to ESPN.

In an interview with Fox Sports after LaRoche’s resignation, Williams said he asked the player to "dial it back" when it came to bringing Drake to White Sox practices and the team'south clubhouse.

"All I'm asking you to do with regard to bringing your kid to the ballpark is dial it back," Williams said he told LaRoche. "I don't think he should be here one hundred % of the time - and he's been here one hundred percent, every day, in the clubhouse."

LaRoche said his teammates have been supportive of his decision, adding that some of them were closer to Drake than they were to him.

Being available for Drake during his formative years was essential, LaRoche said.

“Our kids are going to chase in our footsteps, excellent or bad. And you know, we got a tiny window here, a very tiny window here, to turn them into the men that they're going to be. And I don't wish to miss six months of that window, even for $13 million.”

LaRoche said he didn’t tell Drake that he was at the middle of his retirement decision. He simply told him there had been “’a modify in policy. They're cracking down on kids coming -- not just you.’”

LaRoche and his family -- Drake, daughter MT and wife Jennifer – are presently on a road ride across the country.

“This has been nice -- just the four of us, cooped up in an R. V. We're going to discover how much we like each other, or detest each other; one way or the other. So we're having a blast,” he said.

After they’re done, they’ll return to their ranch in KS and look what happens next.

"One of the things I probably thought the longest on was making sure that, if I did this, that he'd never perceive love this was on his shoulders," LaRoche said of Drake. "I think he knows, deep down, that baseball was never, like, my life or my world or everything to me."

In addition to devoting time to his community and his businesses, LaRoche also plans to continue his work fighting baby trafficking in Asia. He spent ten days undercover in the ruddy light districts of southeast Asia, working with a non-profit organization to assistance victims of sex trafficking.

"I think having my own kid, having two kids of my own, particularly a 12-year-old daughter, it'south impossible not to picture, you know, 'What if this was my daughter?,'" LaRoche said.

When asked whether baseball wasn't as necessary to him after the trip, LaRoche replied, "It wasn't at all."

LaRoche, a pious Christian, stands by his decision to resign, saying he believes his action was directed by “our creator.”

Asked about a possible return to baseball, LaRoche replied: “I'm going to leave that up to the Lord. And if, for some reason, he wants me to go play again, then I won't be able to turn that down.”

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