Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon has shot down a juicy rumor.
Maddon told reporters Tuesday he doesn’t plan to jump ship despite speculation that Andrew Friedman, who resigned as the Rays’ general manager to become the Los Angeles Dodgers’ president of baseball operations, could bring in the skipper to replace Don Mattingly in Los Angeles.
“I’m a Ray, I’ve said it all along, I want to continue to be one,” Maddon said, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. “‘I still believe … it’s the best place in all of baseball to work, but I also stand by fact that ballpark needs to be improved.”
Maddon, who is under contract with the Rays through 2015, said there’s “no rush” to get an extension done, though he clearly wants to remain with the organization. Maddon and his wife recently moved into a new home in the area.
“I’m really embedded (in Tampa) pretty well,” Maddon said, according to Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times. “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.”
A person familiar with the Dodgers’ strategy told Shaikin that Friedman currently plans to retain Mattingly for the 2015 season. It will be interesting to see if Maddon’s tune changes over the next year if he doesn’t sign an extension with the Rays in the meantime.
Photo via Joy R. Absalon/USA TODAY Sports Images
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