Over the last few years, I’ve become infatuated with the growing contingent of Cubs fans who can somehow justify firing Cubs manager Joe Maddon.
“He’s not a good manager.”
“He gets too cute.”
“He is successful in spite of himself.”
“He was given the keys to a Lamborghini, anyone can do what he does.”
“They should have had at least three more championships by now.”
“He tried to lose Game 7 of the World Series. He’s lucky his team was good.”
All of these have been arguments I’ve heard in regards to Joe Maddon and I feel like they are getting louder and louder each day.
The same guy who led the team to breaking the longest championship drought in professional sports history is remarkably still trying to win over a portion of the Cubs fan base for a variety of reasons over the course of his four-year stint on the North side.
Maddon signed on to lead the Cubs in 2015 right as the team started their rise to prominence. He famously told he Chicago media he’d buy them all a shot and a beer at his introductory press conference which immdiately proved that this wasn’t going to be your “traditional” manager.
I always find it funny how everyone loves the quirky Maddon when times are good but when things get tough, that same quirkiness becomes the reason why Maddon needs to go.
Petting zoos, themed road trips, and funny tshirts are always awesome when you’re on a 6-game win streak but when you’re starting pitching is trash and your offense can’t hit water if they fell out of a boat, it’s convenient to place the blame on those same zoos, trips, and tshirts.
Ask any player in the Cubs clubhouse right now who they want to play for and I’d bet you my next mediocre paycheck that they’d say Maddon. When the Cubs manager was under a ton of scrutiny late last season, the team showed their support.
For what it’s worth, Maddon consistently ranks in the top three on the “Managers players want to play for” list as well.
He is currently in his last year of his contract and went into this season being told his extension would be discussed either during or after the 2019 season. Sure, there are issues with extending the 65-year-old Maddon but when you look at his entire body of work over a four-year period, it honestly hurts my head that there are groups of fans that will argue that the Cubs need to go in a different managerial direction.
- Most wins in the NL since 2015
- 2016 World Series Champions
- Three straight trips to the NLCS
- Four straight postseason appearances
And after last night’s win, Maddon added another bullet point to his resume.
You’d literally have to go all the way back BEFORE WWI to find a Cubs manager that has reached 400 wins as quickly as Maddon has which is simply mind blowing.
Look, does Joe do some things during games that make me wonder what the hell is going on?
But I refuse to let the small amount of those bad decisions outweigh the hundreds of other great decisions he makes throughout the course of the year cloud my judgement of how integral he is to the success of the Chicago Cubs.
Extend this man.
He deserves it.