Chicago Cubs: Joe Maddon says he knew he didn’t want to come back

Joe Maddon / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Joe Maddon / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /
1 of 3
Chicago Cubs
Joe Maddon / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /

Former Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon told ESPN that he knew he didn’t want to return, even in the midst of the 2019 season, for a variety of reasons

As camps in Florida and Arizona get underway, a new season dawns – and with it, familiar faces in new places. Cole Hamels now dons an Atlanta Braves cap, Pedro Strop calls Cincinnati home as a member of a reloaded Reds ball club and Joe Maddon stands at the helm of the Los Angeles Angels.

Maddon is coming off a tremendously successful five-year stint as manager of the Chicago Cubs, during which the team reached three consecutive NLCS, won a World Series, captured a pair of division crowns and completely rewrote the expectations on the North Side.

Now, he joins an Angels squad that has utterly failed to capitalize on having the best player in the game in Mike Trout and hasn’t even sniffed the postseason in years. He’s hoping he can breathe life into the club in the same way he pushed the unproven Cubs to new heights in 2015, turning heads across the baseball world in the process.

The writing was on the wall, even at the conclusion of the 2018 season – which ended in the heartbreaking extra-inning loss to Colorado in the Wild Card game – that Maddon’s days were numbered. You knew it, I knew it – and both Theo Epstein and Maddon knew it, as well.