Joe Maddon Is Hired as Angels Manager

Joe Maddon, who led the Chicago Cubs to their first World Series title in 108 years, was hired to manage the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday.

For Maddon, 65, it is a return to a franchise where he spent three decades. He played for the Angels in the minor leagues starting in 1975, then became a scout and a coach in the Angels’ system. He also had two short stretches as interim manager of the major league team in the 1990s.

For his first permanent major league managing job, Maddon took over the Tampa Bay Rays in 2006 and led the team, which had never had a winning season before Maddon arrived, to the World Series in 2008. He opted out of his contract after 2014 and moved to the Cubs, where he became the highest-paid manager in the game at $5 million a year (his salary increased to $6 million after the World Series title).

At the time, the Cubs were still lovable losers, waiting for a first title since 1908. In his second year with the team, Maddon led them to that long-elusive goal, defeating the Cleveland Indians in seven games.

Maddon managed the Cubs to the playoffs in his first four years with the club, but the team slumped to 84-78 this season and missed out on the postseason. It was announced at the end of the season that Maddon, whose contract was expiring, would not return.

Maddon said at the time that he hoped to manage three to five more seasons, and because of his success — he won two Manager of the Year Awards with the Rays and one with the Cubs — he quickly became the hottest managerial free agent of the off-season.

The Angels have been seen as something of a sleeping giant in baseball. Despite having the game’s consensus best player in Mike Trout, the team has had a losing record for four straight years and has not reached the playoffs since 2014.

Maddon replaces Brad Ausmus, who was 72-90 in his one season with the Angels after replacing Mike Scioscia, who had led the team for 18 years, including for its only World Series title in 2002.

Angels General Manager Billy Eppler said of Maddon in a statement on Wednesday: “Every stop he has made throughout his managerial career he has built a culture that is focused on winning while also allowing his players to thrive.”

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