After just five seasons the Chicago Cubs and Joe Maddon are parting ways. While the team broke it’s streak of not winning a World Series since 1908 under Maddon in 2016, the past two seasons have been largely disappointing for Chicago, given the talent on the roster.
Thank you for everything, Joe. pic.twitter.com/nl6av8Xkhi
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) September 29, 2019
Joe Maddon Out in Chicago
As mentioned above, Maddon was the manager behind the first Cubs World Series title since 1908. That alone will put him in Cubs lore forever. Outside of that, however, his tenure in Chicago was very successful.
The Cubs have won over 58 percent of their games during Maddon’s tenure. Not only winning that World Series title but winning three division titles in his five seasons. One of the division-winning seasons was the World Series-winning season, and the other two division-winning seasons involved the team going to the NLCS.
Maddon, long known for his ability to relate to players and keep a good attitude in the clubhouse, has seen the team underachieve the past two seasons. A lot of the talent from the World Series team is still there, and while they did win 95 games last season, it didn’t result in a division title. It resulted in them losing the NL Wild Card Game.
This season, however, has been extremely disappointing. The team finished with 84 wins and suffered a nine-game losing streak in late September that cost them any chance at making the postseason. They finished with an 11-16 record in September.
That September performance led many to speculate that Maddon wouldn’t be in Chicago next season before the Cubs made the announcement.
Maddon is 65-years old and will be 66 by the time next season starts. Most would imagine he will have another managerial stop before hanging it up for good. However, he has accomplished a lot between Chicago and Tampa Bay, so it’s possible he could just want to call it good. Make no mistake though, there will be openings this offseason, and he will at least have the chance to manage again, should he want to.
For the Cubs, this is an interesting time. Despite the down year, there’s plenty of talent on this roster. Yes, there are holes to fix. However, this is a franchise with money to spend, and Theo Epstein has already said he is going to return to the front office. However, speculation linking him back to Boston will likely exist until the Red Sox fill the GM role.
If Epstein does in fact return, he is a trustworthy person to build a team with.
Expect the Cubs to continue the trend of baseball teams hiring young managers. This roster, even with the holes, is primed to win. If the Cubs nail this hire, they should be back in contention next season.
Top Photo: Gene J. Puskar/ Associated Press