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.

Dodgers to retire Fernando Valenzuela’s No. 34 this summer

Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
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LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers will retire the No. 34 jersey of pitcher Fernando Valenzuela during a three-day celebration this summer.

Valenzuela was part of two World Series champion teams, winning the 1981 Rookie of the Year and Cy Young awards. He was a six-time All-Star during his 11 seasons in Los Angeles from 1980-90.

He will be honored from Aug. 11-13 when the Dodgers host Colorado.

Valenzuela will join Pee Wee Reese, Tommy Lasorda, Duke Snider, Gil Hodges, Jim Gilliam, Don Sutton, Walter Alston, Sandy Koufax, Roy Campanella, Jackie Robinson and Don Drysdale with retired numbers.

“To be a part of the group that includes so many legends is a great honor,” Valenzuela said. “But also for the fans, the support they’ve given me as a player and working for the Dodgers, this is also for them.”