Joe Maddon’s pursuit of the Cubs job called “a classless act” by some in the game

136 Comments

News broke just before Game 7 that the Cubs had hired — or were about to hire — Joe Maddon as their manager. Then everything seemed to back off a bit. “Details were still being worked on,” and since then we’ve had more or less radio silence. The general consensus from reporters who tend to be right about this stuff is that it’s happening, but that there was hesitancy to announce it or have it confirmed on the day of Game 7.

Or, perhaps, because there is some P.R. and fence-mending to do beforehand. Because, as Andy Martino reports, some people in and around the game are not at all pleased at Maddon going to the Cubs when the Cubs, at the moment, have a manager in Rick Renteria. Maddon is being viewed as going after Renteria’s job and, in the fraternity of managers and baseball men, that is considered bad form.

Here’s Martino:

Amid widespread expectation in the industry that Maddon will be named Cubs manager, and conflicting reports about whether the hire has already happened, lifers were saying that the mere possibility did not look good. Maddon is well-liked, and his competitors are hoping that the full details, when they emerge, will prove more flattering. For now, the fraternity is displeased.

“The whole industry is talking about what a classless act (this is),” said one high-ranking major league executive.

I’m not sure if this is a classless act for Maddon as much as it is bad form by the Cubs in not dealing with Renteria somehow first, but I suppose that’s quibbling and that it takes two to tango.  I also suspect that the delay in naming Maddon manager is about the Cubs, realizing that this all got out before they wanted it to in a way they didn’t want to, engaging in some sort of damage control. Be it offering Renteria a job elsewhere in the organization, looking to sweeten a buyout offer or otherwise trying to make it so that this is not perceived the same way a dude dumping his wife for some hot new thing is perceived.

Batting champion Luis Arraez beats Marlins in salary arbitration

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
1 Comment

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — AL batting champion Luis Arraez won his arbitration case and will get a $6.1 million salary from the Miami Marlins, who acquired the All-Star infielder from the Minnesota Twins last month.

Miami argued for $5 million during a hearing before John Stout, Mark Burstein and Scott Buchheit. Arraez received a raise from $2.2 million.

Marlins pitcher Jesus Luzardo went to a hearing and asked for a raise from $715,000 to $2.45 million, while Miami proposed $2.1 million. The case was heard by Stout, Melinda Gordon and Richard Bloch, who were expected to issue their decision.

Arraez hit .316 with eight homers, 49 RBIs and a .795 OPS last year for Minnesota, starting 61 games at first base, 34 at designated hitter and 31 at second. The 25-year-old was traded on Jan. 20 for starting pitcher Pablo Lopez and a pair of prospects: infielder Jose Salas and outfielder Byron Chourio.

Arraez is eligible for free agency after the 2026 season.

Luzardo, a 25-year-old left-hander, was 4-7 with a 3.32 ERA in 18 starts last year, striking out 120 and walking 35 in 100 1/3 innings. He is 13-18 with a 3.59 ERA in 45 starts and 16 relief appearances over four big league seasons.

Luzardo also is eligible for free agency after the 2026 season.

Seattle defeated Diego Castillo in the first salary arbitration decision this year, and the relief pitcher will get a raise to $2.95 million rather than his request of $3,225,000.

A decision is being held for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Twenty-two players remain scheduled for hearings, to take place through Feb. 17. Among them, utilityman Dylan Moore and the Seattle Mariners have a pending three-year contract worth $8,875,000.