Theo Epstein Denies Rumor Cubs Are 'Pissed' Joe Maddon Discussed Contract

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistAugust 13, 2019

Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon walks in the dugout before a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Pittsburgh, Monday, July 1, 2019. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press

Theo Epstein has denied that Joe Maddon's recent comments about his contract reportedly made the Chicago Cubs unhappy.

Per Dan Bernstein of 670 The Score (h/t Evan Altman of Cubs Insider), the Cubs are "pissed" at Maddon because he didn't "honor the handshake … agreement" they had not to discuss his status in public.

"They are not happy with Joe Maddon saying what he said where he said and when he said it, and this is a power move by Joe," Bernstein said.

Epstein later issued a statement, via Jordan Bastian of MLB.com, calling the report "totally baseless," adding "we had no problems with Joe's comments."

Speaking to reporters prior to Sunday's game against the Cincinnati Reds, Maddon was asked about his optimism level about remaining with the Cubs after this season. 

"It's very high, yeah," he said. "Very high. Very, very high. I'm operating in that I believe we'll be together for a couple more years at least."

Maddon is in the final season of the original five-year deal he signed in November 2014.

His contract status has been an ongoing discussion topic since The Athletic's Patrick Mooney reported last November that Cubs president Theo Epstein said the team wouldn't discuss an extension during the offseason and would re-evaluate it later in 2019. 

Maddon, 65, has been one of the most successful managers in Cubs history, leading them to the 2016 World Series title. His .589 winning percentage ranks third, behind Frank Chance and Al Spalding, and he recently passed Joe McCarthy for fifth-most wins (451).