During his end of season press conference Thursday, Theo Epstein confirmed the coaching staff has been invited back for next year. The front office is very happy with the results on the field at the big league level. And unless another team calls, Joe Maddon’s entire coaching staff will return for the 2016 season.
Along with Joe Maddon, Dave Martinez (bench coach), Chris Bosio (pitching coach), Lester Strode (bullpen coach), Mike Borzello (catching coach), John Mallee (hitting coach), Eric Hinske (assistant hitting coach), Brandon Hyde (first base coach), Gary Jones (third base coach) and Henry Blanco (quality assurance coach) will be back next season.
Joe Maddon is under contract for four more seasons. Chris Bosio is also under contract but there are conflicting reports on the length of his deal. Bosio has either one or two more years remaining on his contract. A team will have to receive permission from the Cubs to talk the coaching staff. Dave Martinez is expected to interview for at least the Nationals and Dodgers managerial openings..
When Theo Epstein was asked about the status of coaches Thursday he said, “You can definitely assume everyone is going to be back.” Epstein talked to Joe Maddon about his staff and the Cubs’ skipper was happy with the job everyone did.
The Cubs did not consider making any changes to the coaching staff. Epstein explained, “We are thrilled with the job everybody did and at this point no one has been asked about by other organizations.”
Epstein would not be surprised if teams called and asked to talk to the current coaching staff about openings because of the job each one did with the Cubs this season. Epstein said the Cubs will “have to read and react” if teams call and present the coaches with job opportunities.
“Of course, everyone has been invited back,” Epstein said. “It is such an important part to our Ballclub and the infrastructure. Joe and the coaches setting the tone and getting the guys prepared. I look forward to working with all of those guys again next year.”
The front office was extremely happy with Joe Maddon this season. And Epstein is proud of everything Maddon and his coaching staff accomplished this year.
“Joe has made a remarkable impact just by being himself,” Epstein said. “I think a Major League team, over time, starts taking on the personality of its manager. Take on the sensibilities of its manager. Take on the values of its manager, whether it knows it or not and that’s why things were so nutty around here in a great way.”
Maddon makes it fun for everyone to come to work every day. Epstein really enjoys being around him and pointed out that Maddon made his quality of life better.
“He pulled off the impossible of making a bunch of 21-, 22- and 23-year old kids, 40 years his junior, gravitate towards him and feel comfortable around him,” Epstein said.
Maddon is an important part of the mix and what it means to be a Cub. Epstein explained that what started in the minor leagues three or four years ago “that pride of being a Cub” the spirit, morale and pride that they have being Cubs “percolated its way through the system” with the players.
It is hard to carry the same spirit from the minors all the way to the big league level because things are infinitely more complicated in the majors. Epstein feels Maddon and his coaching staff accomplished that this year as well as having the team prepared to play on a daily basis.
Theo Epstein thinks it will help moving forward, especially next spring, that the players will know what to expect from Joe Maddon and the Cubs coaching staff.
The entire organization is on the same page. The players know how things are run, what is expected of them, what is valued and what is not tolerated. They know how to win under Maddon. Epstein is certain the team’s goals and priorities are clear.
Epstein thinks the players will come back in the spring extremely hungry after the season they just had, plus watching the Mets celebrate a trip to the World Series in their house at Wrigley Field.
Theo Epstein wishes Opening Day was next week.