Ricketts Defers To Epstein On Maddon's Future

"Joe's been terrific," Tom Ricketts says. "Joe's a great manager."

Mully & Haugh Show
January 17, 2019 - 11:41 am

(670 The Score) As Cubs manager Joe Maddon enters the 2019 campaign with a contract that expires at season's end, owner Tom Ricketts plans to stay out of the decision-making process regarding Maddon's future.

In Ricketts' mind, the retention of Maddon or parting of ways with him after 2019 is for president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer to decide.

"That all goes to Theo and Jed and the baseball organization," Ricketts said. "Joe's been terrific. Joe's a great manager. He's a great guy. I think those guys will work it out. But it's really not in my court to jump in on that and weigh in. Obviously, you hire smart people to run baseball because you expect them to make smart decisions, and I'll leave it in their court. I'm sure it will all work out."

In the first week of November, Epstein announced there will be no extension talks with Maddon this offseason while also leaving open the possibility of those occurring during the 2019 season. 

The Cubs have experienced great success since Maddon was hired in November 2014, going 387-261 (.597) and reaching the playoffs in each of the four years with Maddon leading the way. The accomplishments include two National League Central crowns, three NL Championship Series appearances and a World Series championship in 2016.

Tom Ricketts defends Cubs' quiet offseason

But much to the chagrin of Epstein and everyone in the organization, the Cubs faltered down the stretch in 2018, losing their grip on the NL Central with a loss to the Brewers in Game 163 before a playoff exit at the hands of the Rockies in the NL wild-card game.

"We talked about the season and assessed everything that's gone right under his leadership and how impactful he has been," Epstein said of Maddon in November. "We also dug in deep into adjustments we all need to make to be better than we were in 2018. We didn't reach our goals last year."