Joe Maddon expected back as Cubs manager in 2019

Posted October 04, 2018

The former Red Sox pitcher won two World Series' with the Red Sox and one with the Cubs in 2016. Still, he became the sixth pitcher to amass more than 150 career postseason innings, and he lowered his career playoffs ERA to 2.51. With two outs, he came on as a pinch runner and stole second. Terrance Gore tried to sell that he was hit by a pitch, but was sent back to the plate after a replay review confirmed the initial call.

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Once the last out was recorded and the Rockies' tickets to Milwaukee stamped (they'll take on the quietly powerful Brewers beginning Thursday, October 4), the Cubs faithful went straight to their phones and began tapping out messages of pain and remorse. But Heyward struck out swinging.

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The Team Europe duo were two up after two holes and McIlroy made a fine putt on the third for a halve. Both players had their moments, and a victory in this match is nearly imperative for the Americans.

Ottavino had an 0-2 count on Baez when his third pitch got too much of the plate. After walking 10.4 percent of batters he faced in his first three seasons in the big leagues between 2015-17, he walked only 5.3 percent of batters faced this season. He surrendered four hits and one walk while striking out six. The free-swinging slugger drove it into the gap in left-center for a tying double, easily scoring Gore from second and sending a charge through the crowd. If Gore didn't understand the situation, manager Joe Maddon and his coaching staff should have. It's hard to imagine the Cubs shelving him today for an ostensible health issue - after a month and a half of deep struggle - and then counting on him as a playoff arm in a short series.

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That came to the first hitter of the game, Charlie Blackmon. Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado exchanged a memorable hug with Javier Baez after he tagged the excitable Cubs star in the 11th. It was a pivotal moment in the game, with a leverage index of 3.53 (an average LI is 1.00). Some of Maddon's in-game tactics led to some criticism from pundits and fans over the years, and Rosenthal's subscription-only piece outlines some of the instances where Epstein could have found fault with Maddon's decisions this year, such as possibly overusing Brandon Morrow.