Joe Maddon and Stuart Sternberg

Joe Maddon’s contract is up at the end of next season, which has led to speculation in some circles (including here) that his days as manager of the Rays are numbered since he will be due a big raise.

Maddon recently addressed his future and said that he hopes to remain with the Rays. That is mildly interesting since we shouldn’t expect him to say anything else and we don’t know what the “but” is, as in, “but I need to do what is best for me and my family” or “but I need to at least make a salary that is comparable with the other top managers in baseball.”

More interestingly, Maddon told the media he wants to manage for ten more years, which would take him through the 2024 season when he will be 70 years old.

Smart money says Maddon will be back next season even if Dave Martinez would be a cheaper option with most of Maddon’s training and secrets already locked away. Martinez recently missed out on the Houston Astros managerial position.

But even Maddon concedes that based on how the Rays do business it is certainly possible that he his next contract won’t be with the Rays. And while there is plenty of time to get a deal done, it is clear that the Rays have not yet approached their manager about a new deal.

“Of course I want to [stay with the Rays], but it’s not up to me,” Maddon recently told the Tampa Bay Times. “Do I anticipate it? I think we’re pretty consistent about what we do and how we do it. So from that perspective, I would anticipate yes … Do I always want to be a Ray? Yes. And I am certain if it’s mutual on the other side that it would happen again. … But it’s not incumbent on me to start that conversation.”

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  1. Woodrow744 says:

    Joe is in the catbird seat. He would be coveted just about anywhere in MLB and is probably the only real "star" the Rays have. He is charitable, quotable, and has an "it factor" sportswriters love. Furthermore, he loves the camera and loves being the face of the organization - not a bad thing when you have players who are publicity shy, as the Rays are now, especially since DP left town.
    My guess is that Joe really doesn't care about the money - he cares about playoffs and beyond. That's where his legacy lies. He's just a slightly eccentric manager from that over-achieving team in Tampa (St. Pete) until he goes deep in the playoffs for several years. And that, friends, is up to the owner, front office, and maybe two players.

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