From BR Bullpen
Joseph John Maddon
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 11", Weight 190 lb.
- School Lafayette College
- High School Hazleton High School
 Biographical Information
Joe Maddon has managed the Los Angeles Angels and the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, most notably in 2008 when the Rays won the American League pennant. He was named manager of the Chicago Cubs starting in 2015.
He was converted to a catcher while at Lafayette College by Norm Gigon. Maddon was signed by the California Angels as a free agent and played for the Quad Cities Angels (1976), Salinas Angels (1977-1978), and Santa Clara Padres (1979). He scouted for a time, signing Kirk McCaskill and Tim Salmon for the team.
Maddon managed in the Angels farm system for six years, from 1981 to 1986. He served as the Angels' minor league roving hitting instructor from 1987 to 1993.
Maddon was a coach with the Anaheim Angels/Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim from 1994 to 2005. He also served as the club's interim manager on two occasions. Maddon was named skipper of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays beginning with the 2006 season. He led the re-named Rays to their first winning record and postseason appearance in 2008, taking the young team all the way to the 2008 World Series, where they were beaten ion five games by the Philadelphia Phillies. He was named American League Manager of the Year for his performance that season. In 2009, the Rays had another winning season, but finished third behind the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox in the AL East, missing the postseason, but in 2010, they had the best record in the American League. However, they lost a tightly-fought five-game series with the Texas Rangers in the ALDS and after the season, the team was re-shaped after fixtures Carlos Lee, Rafael Soriano, Joaquin Benoit and Carl Crawford left via free agency while Matt Garza was traded. Maddon did another tremendous job in 2011, rebuilding his bullpen from scratch and working around the early retirement of slugger Manny Ramirez after he failed a drug test in early April, to lead the Rays into the postseason for the third time. He was able to coax a lot of production out of unheralded players such as Sam Fuld and Sean Rodriguez, around a trademark very strong group of starting pitchers, keeping his team within sight of the leaders, and then leading them on a charge in September when the Boston Red Sox began to falter. The Rays caught and passed the Sox on the season's last day, then upset the Rangers in the first game of the ALDS before finally running out of magic tricks.
As a manager, Maddon is known for maintaining an unusually tight bond with his players. A good example was when the Rays first made the postseason in 2008, many players decided to sport a mohawk haircut for luck - and Maddon joined in. He also started the practice of "theme" road trips, where all members of the team will do something unusual, such as wear specially tailored loud sports jackets in the team colors, or dress as if heading to a slumber party. He has also been known for making unusual choices in putting together his line-up. In 2010, he had catcher John Jaso leading off for a good portion of the year, and in 2012 he handed in a few line-up cards with slugging 1B Carlos Pena batting lead-off and unheralded middle infielder Jeff Keppinger in the clean-up spot. In an interleague game in 2011, he had OF Sam Fuld, who had just pinch hit for his pitcher, take warm-up tosses on the mound the following inning, in order to buy more time to allow the reliever he really wanted to see pitch come into the game; MLB had to change the relevant rule after the season to prevent imitators. He is so unpredictable that when he was forced to bat pitcher Andy Sonnanstine third during a game in 2009, because of an incorrectly filled line-up card, many observers thought that it was, once again, some sort of deliberate move. That is because there is usually method to his madness, as many of his seemingly strange decisions are in fact based on studying computer printouts of batter and pitcher tendencies and match-ups. As a result, he was the first manager to systematically use defensive shifts against opposite batters, when their use had been sporadic before; he was soon imitated by many of his peers. Part of his way of thinking is that he likes to keep the opposing manager wondering what he will come up with next, something which was characteristic of managers such as Earl Weaver and Gene Mauch in an earlier era. However, if those two were high-strung and intense personalities, Maddon is quite laid-back and knows how to keep things in perspective, making him extremely well-liked by his players.
In a surprise move, Maddon announced his resignation on October 24, 2014, a short time after GM Andrew Friedman had left the team to join the front office of the Los Angeles Dodgers. New GM Matt Silverman had to advice him that there was an opt-out clause in his contract, and after a short reflection, he decided to exercise it, marking the end of a period of success for a team that was a laughingstock before Friedman and Maddon came on board. He explained that he felt he had been underpaid for years and was now available for any team that wanted to hire him at the right price - although almost all managerial openings for the coming season were already filled at that point. However, rumors quickly began circulating that the Chicago Cubs were interested in his services and were ready to drop current manager Rich Renteria after only one season to create an opening for Maddon, rumors which found their confirmation when Renteria was fired on October 31st to make way for Maddon, who was introduced at a press conference on November 3rd. He signed a five-year deal worth $25 million. He immediately professed optimism, stating that he did not see why the last-place club could not contend for the postseason in his first year. The Rays accused the Cubs of tampering in raiding their long-time manager, but after an investigation that took almost six months, the Commissioner's office rejected the charges.
Maddon had a fabulous first season at the helm of the Cubs in 2015 as he turned the cellar-dwellers into one of the strongest teams in the major leagues by successfully integrating top prospects such as 3B Kris Bryant, SS Addison Russell and C/OF Kyle Schwarber to the line-up. The Cubs finished third in the NL Central only because the two teams ahead of them, the St. Louis cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates finished the best two records in the major leagues that year, with the Cubs completing the trifecta. Riding the magic arm of ace Jake Arrieta, the Cubs then went into PNC Park to shut out the Pirates in the Wild Card Game and stunned the Cardinals in four games in the Division Series. The magic season ended in the NLCS when they were swept at the hands of the New York Mets, but the season gave Wrigley Field fans hope that their World Series curse would soon be over. Maddon was named the NL Manager of the Year for this performance, the third time he had won the award.
 Notable Achievements
- 3-time Manager of the Year Award (2008/AL, 2011/AL & 2015/NL)
- Division Titles: 2 (2008 & 2010)
- Other Postseason Appearances: 3 (2011, 2013 & 2015 - wild card)
- AL Pennants: 1 (2008)
|California Angels Manager
|Anaheim Angels Manager
|Tampa Bay Devil Rays Manager
|Chicago Cubs Manager
 Year-by-Year Managerial Record
 Further Reading
- Bob Nightengale: "Rays manager marches to a different beat", USA Today Sports, June 11, 2013. 
- Bob Nightengale: "High expectations come with Joe Maddon as Cubs manager", USA Today, November 3, 2014. 
- Joey Nowak: "Maddon holds court, talks playoffs during intro: Cubs' new manager doesn't mince words at news conference",, mlb.com, November 3, 2014. 
- Jorge L. Ortiz: "Unorthodox manager Joe Maddon brings Cubs optimism", USA Today Sports, February 20, 2015. 
- Jorge L. Ortiz: "Cubs' Joe Maddon wins NL Manager of the Year award", USA Today Sports, November 17, 2015.