Joe Maddon to the Dodgers? Rays manager “absolutely” wants to stay in Tampa Bay

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As soon as news broke that Andrew Friedman was leaving the Rays for the Dodgers speculation started about his luring manager Joe Maddon to join him in Los Angeles.

One issue: Maddon, unlike Friedman, actually has a contract with the Rays and is under team control for 2015.

It’s the final season of a three-year deal believed to be worth around $6 million, so if Maddon is going to join Friedman in Los Angeles it’ll either have to wait until 2016 or the Dodgers would have to convince the Rays to trade their manager.

Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that Friedman’s “plan for now” is to keep Don Mattingly as manager, so the odds of a trade for Maddon seem slim. And what about once Maddon’s contract is up next offseason? Shaikin spoke to Maddon, who said:

I want to continue to be a Ray, absolutely. They have to want me to be a Ray too. I’m really embedded here pretty well. The roots are pretty strong. We have a great infrastructure here. We have a great operation. We have great people. There’s so much to like. There’s only one negative. That’s the ballpark. It’s a big negative. But that’s about it.

Mattingly may keep his job, but he’ll probably hear a lot about Maddon next season.