Joe Maddon, Chicago Cubs to Part Ways

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - SEPTEMBER 17: Manager Joe Maddon #70 of the Chicago Cubs watches as his team takes on the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field on September 17, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Joe Maddon, Chicago Cubs Mutually Agree To Part Ways

The Chicago Cubs have announced that Joe Maddon will not be returning as manager in 2020. It was a mutual decision that was decided last night in a meeting between Maddon and Cubs president Theo Epstein. Maddon managed the team for the last five years, leading the franchise to plenty of success.

Accolades and Achievements

In his five-year tenure with Chicago, the skipper led the team to a World Series victory, in 2016. Before his arrival, the franchise was on an extreme championship drought. Along with a talented roster, Maddon brought the Cubs their first World Series since 1908 —  snapping a 108-year title-less streak. In that season they won 103 games, which was the highest win total for Chicago since 1910. In addition to the long-awaited World Series win, Chicago made four straight playoff appearances. Maddon managed the team to the NLCS in 2015 and 2017. Unfortunately, they fell short of the NL pennant in both postseason berths.

Maddon won NL Manager of the Year in that 2015 run, as many were surprised of the instant success Chicago had. Prior to that, the Cubs last winning season was in 2009. Under Maddon, the team never had a losing season. He will finish with the third-best winning percentage as a manager, in team history. He played a major role in the revival of a struggling franchise. It’s safe to say that Cub fans will look back on the last five years fondly, after being spoiled with consistent winning baseball.

Possible Replacements

Although it may be too early to predict the future manager in the “Friendly Confines,” there are some early candidates:

David Ross

David Ross is a fan favorite. He was apart of the World Series-winning squad in 2016. Since his retirement from the MLB, he has been working at ESPN as a broadcaster. Whether he would even be open to managing the ball club is up for debate. He does have a close bond with many of the current players on the roster, and the fan-base loves the former catcher.

Joe Girardi

This former New York Yankee manager has been associated with many vacant positions throughout the league. He didn’t have a single losing season in his ten-year stint with the Yankees. Joe Girardi also spent seven years playing for Chicago during his MLB career. He has been idle for two years since his split from New York. The move would make sense for Chicago, as Girardi is an experienced manager compared to Ross.

Dave Martinez

There seems to be a theme with these rumored replacement candidates. All of them have played for the Cubs in the past. Dave Martinez not only played for the club for four years throughout his playing career, but he was also the team’s bench coach from 2014-2016. So yes, he was apart of the World Series-winning staff. The fan-base obviously holds him to high standards because of this and the fact that he’s been successful as the Washington Nationals manager. The Nationals are headed to the playoffs with Martinez at the helm this season. It may be far fetched to expect him to leave D.C after just two years.

Tough to Replace

No matter who the next manager is in 2020, they will have extremely big shoes to fill. Replacing Maddon is not going to be easy. He brought a winning mentality to a franchise who desperately needed it. These replacement candidates are all qualified in many ways, but fans should take the time to celebrate Joe Maddon —  who is considered one of the best managers in Chicago Cub history. With 471 wins, 18 playoff wins, a World Series pennant, and four consecutive playoff berths, it was quite the run for Chicago sports legend, “Broadstreet Joe” Maddon.

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