Mike Maddux removed his name from consideration for the Red Sox’s managerial opening yesterday, citing the desire to remain close to his family in Texas, but the Rangers pitching coach will go through with his scheduled interview with the Cubs today.
Chicago is obviously much closer to Dallas than Boston is, but it’s still nearly 1,000 miles away.
Maddux follows Pete Mackanin and Dave Sveum as the third candidate to interview with the Cubs and they’ll be followed by Sandy Alomar Jr. later this week.
Carrie Muskat of MLB.com speculates that Maddux’s willingness to interview in Chicago after turning down the same chance in Boston could stem from the relationship his brother, Greg Maddux, has with the Cubs. Or maybe the difference between 1,000 miles and 1,750 miles is a really significant one for Maddux and his family.
An interesting tidbit today from The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, who noted that ongoing talks between agent Scott Boras and the Padres have focused more on starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel than slugger Bryce Harper. Earlier this week, there were conflicting reports on the Padres’ level of interest in Harper — MLB Network’s Jon Heyman heard the club had not ruled out another big signing after getting Manny Machado, while Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune talked to multiple sources who believed otherwise — but any agreement between the two is looking unlikelier by the day.
As for Keuchel, Rosenthal cautions that a potential deal is still a “longshot,” especially as the team has other, cheaper options in mind. The 31-year-old southpaw turned down a qualifying offer from the Astros last year and is likely angling for something north of the five-year, $90 million contract extension he rejected from the club in 2016. He’s coming off of another solid performance in Houston, where he went 12-11 in 34 starts with a 3.74 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 6.7 SO/9, and 3.6 fWAR through 204 2/3 innings in 2018.
While Keuchel has failed to garner substantial interest around the league this offseason, Heyman points out that the Phillies are looking to establish themselves as frontrunners for the lefty — and they’re far less likely to have hang-ups about his asking price, too.