How good of a manager is Joe Maddon?
Steve Phillips, the former Mets GM and former ESPN analyst, is now working for AOL Fanhouse. He has come up with his own list of the best managers in baseball. Where does the Rays' Joe Maddon rank on Phillips' list? Eighth, behind Tony LaRussa (Cards), Bobby Cox (Braves), Terry Francona (Red Sox), Mike Scioscia (Angels), Joe Torre (Dodgers), Ron Gardenhire (Twins) and Jim Leyland (Tigers). Interestingly, Maddon ranks ahead of the Yankees' Joe Girardi and Lou Piniella, who was included on the list which was compiled just before Piniella retired.
Phillips ranks Maddon second in "Nurturing Youngsters,'' third on "Handling the Media,'' and fifth in "Handling Pitchers.'' To read Phillips' complete breakdown of MLB managers, click here.