Chicago Cubs' Maddon comfortable with contract situation

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Cubs' Anthony Rizzo, center, and manager Joe Maddon, left, argue with umpire Angel Hernandez (5) after Rizzo was called out on strikes to end a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018, in Chicago.

    Chicago Cubs' Anthony Rizzo, center, and manager Joe Maddon, left, argue with umpire Angel Hernandez (5) after Rizzo was called out on strikes to end a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018, in Chicago.

 
 
Updated 8/5/2018 6:25 PM

Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon's five-year contract runs through the end of the 2019 season.

There has been no public talk from the Cubs about extending Maddon past that, and Maddon said he was not going to ask for anything like a 10-year deal.

 

"Nope," he said Sunday. "I don't think that would be appropriate."

The conversation got started when Maddon was asked about a report that had Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia retiring at the end of the season, a report Scioscia called "poppycock."

Maddon managed the Tampa Bay Rays for nine seasons before coming to the Cubs after the 2014 season.

"Nine years in Tampa Bay, I've always thought seven to 10 years was the right amount of time to do one job," he said. "You could do another job in that place, like if you elevate from bench coach to manager as an example or hitting coach to bench coach. But to do the same thing for that long, for me it would be difficult, quite frankly.

"So I think there's a mental shelf life involved in something like that. I think you want to be challenged. That's why going from the bench coach with the Angels to the manager of the Rays was really important to me at that point in my development because you do this other job in a rote manner because you've done it, done it, done it, done it.

"And you don't really have this opportunity to test your thoughts or ideas because you're not making the final decision."

Break out the bling:

The Cubs departed for Kansas City after Sunday's game, and it was another themed dress-up trip.

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This time, Cubs players dressed like relief pitcher Pedro Strop, which meant a lot of bling and flashy clothes and shoes.

The idea was a group effort involving Joe Maddon, traveling secretary Vijay Tekchandani and catching coach Mike Borzello.

"They came up with this Strop Day, and I was like 'Oh, man,' " said Strop, who is popular among teammates.

Strop added he would have no trouble coming up with an outfit; all he'd have to do is look inside his closet.

Maddon is known for themed road trips, and he urged people not to take it too seriously.

"Lighten it up a little bit, folks," he said. "You get right now, you keep playing these very difficult games, tight race and so you start losing your mind a little bit. So just relax, play baseball, have some fun with it. I'm sure we'll play our better brand at that point."

DH doings:

With three games in Kansas City this week, the Cubs will get to use the designated hitter.

"It lengthens the lineup," Joe Maddon said. "It probably speaks to (Anthony) Rizzo even more so in the 1-hole. You can set up 8 and 9 without the pitcher. If you're in the American League, that's really attractive, to put on-base guys at the bottom and get like your best two hitters maybe 1 and 2."

Big Baez numbers:

Javier Baez again set a single-season high with his 24th home run in Sunday's 10-6 loss to the San Diego Padres. Baez also raised his batting average to .300, his highest postgame average since April 28 (.304).

Baez also heard chants of "MVP" from the Wrigley Field crowd of 41,136.

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