No traditional Bullets today, as the Joe Maddon stuff is overshadowing anything else we’d want to be discussing right now (especially on a Sunday). So let’s just look at more Maddon bits …
- Patrick Mooney writes about the way the Cubs pursued Theo Epstein three years ago, and how it became a point-of-no-return kind of thing. He’s drawing a certain parallel there, which is understandable given the continued silence emanating from the Cubs about Maddon and current manager Rick Renteria. We’ve long passed the point where the Cubs could credibly deny that they are looking into this thing, but does that mean the point at which the Cubs could come out with a strong statement that they’re sticking with Renteria is already gone? We’ll see.
- My guess on the silence at this point is that the Cubs are looking into the possibility of hiring Maddon, and, to the extent they had anything to say publicly at all about that, they don’t want to do it during the World Series.
- Mooney’s piece also has comments from Maddon’s agent, Alan Nero, who reiterates that Maddon could wind up sitting out a year and doing the TV thing if a perfect managerial situation doesn’t arise. Paul Sullivan writes on the same subject, with comments from Nero, who told Sullivan that any allegations of tampering are ridiculous – in part, it sounds like, because the Cubs haven’t even contacted Nero yet. At least as of mid-day yesterday.
- To that point, Gordon Wittenmyer has a source saying that Theo Epstein flew to Tampa Bay yesterday to meet with Maddon, though Maddon’s agent denied that. Wittenmyer’s piece, together with Mooney’s and Sullivan’s, should be your Sunday Maddon reading if you can’t get enough of this story.
- Nick Cafardo received a plain denial of interest from the Red Sox, but he seems to remain of the mind that a number of other teams are going to go hard after Maddon as soon as the World Series dust clears. Which teams might that be? We still don’t know for sure yet, because there have pretty much been three categories of clubs: the deniers (which includes most of the obvious places), the Cubs (heavily rumored, but no comments publicly), and the non-deniers-non-rumored. Like, for my own example … the Cardinals.
- I have a strong feeling, by the way, that Maddon will wind up going wherever he feels the most excited about the fit. The money is likely to be similar in every offer, but, to the extent there’s a small difference here and there, I think he’s the kind of guy who’s ultimately going to go where he sees the brightest future. I’m not saying that’s the Cubs for sure, but you do have to love their position, in that respect (Obligatory: But sticking with Renteria could be good for the future, too.)