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Joe Maddon: The Book of Joe


Joe Maddon

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Kelly snags an interview with the legendary baseball manager Joe Maddon to talk about his new book "The Book of Joe: Trying Not to Suck at Baseball & Life."

As a life-long Cubs fan whose Dad worked for WGN for 33 years, I imagine you have many, many people from Chicago who share how deep their love of the Cubs goes.

“I mean a lot of times it really gets to the point where they will talk about their deceased relatives, and going to the to the funeral, up to the cemetery, and sitting next to their stones, their tombstones, and having a drink with them. And when you hear stuff like that, I mean, it doesn’t get more deep. I don't think that it gets deeper than that. So, I listen because I know how sincere everybody is. I know how much this means to them and to the previous generations. It's just different. You don't get this everywhere.”

You were a big proponent of data and analytics, but not at the expense of experience in baseball.

“The mathematicians were trying to get their foot in the door, and quite frankly, the baseball folks wanted to listen to what they had to say, because we were always open to grabbing the information. Just give us a new vein of info, we're all about it. But now it has swung so far to the other side, where mathematicians are running the game and real baseball folks can't get in the door. It's really been slammed on them. Experience is almost a dirty word, and nobody really is looking for it anymore or wisdom.”

Most of my coaches yelled at me and, honestly, it wasn’t effective.

“Yeah, communication as opposed to intimidation. I think back when we were growing up, intimidation was the main communicative factor. I played a lot of football and I had some really tough guys with football. I had some really tough guys with baseball, too. But when I got to college, Coach Bob Root was my backfield coach, and this guy communicated so well I just wanted to coach or be like Coach Bob Root. So,that was the thought that I had. He is communicating with me through a conversation as opposed to attempting to intimidate me, which I think, has been a lot of how it's been done in the past.”

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Photo Credit: Twelve Books

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