Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays manager Joe Maddon will savor chance to manage All-Star Game in St. Louis

Joe Maddon doesn't like all the politics involved with managing the All-Star Game.

What if, for example, he has to pick between two Rays, Jason Bartlett and Ben Zobrist, for a roster spot? Decide whether to select Tigers RHP Edwin Jackson, whom the Rays traded in a deal that already looks lopsided? Consider taking Indians C Victor Martinez, with whom he exchanged heated words a couple months ago? Shunning one of his former Angels players?

But he loves the opportunity of managing this All-Star Game.

Though he grew up in Hazleton, Pa., Maddon grew up a Cardinals fan — an affection dating to an early 1960s game at Yankee Stadium he attended with his father and when offered a souvenir picked a Cardinals cap.

"Being the fact that it's in St. Louis, being an old Cardinals fan growing up, it's kind of interesting to me," Maddon said. "Being a Branch Rickey fan and all the history that surrounds that city, it's weird because growing up I had never been there. I became a fan listening to them on KMOX (radio). And then I became this like stupid, ridiculous die-hard fan and always wanted to see the old Busch Stadium."

He finally did, with the Angels, then saw the new stadium in June 2008 with the Rays. But to go back in this role is clearly special to a man who typically tries to downplay such honors.

"To me, it's an intriguing moment in regard to where I've come from; my development as a young man becoming a baseball fan, being so, really, you have no idea how closely linked I was mentally to this group for so many years. To be the manager of an All-Star Game there, it's almost unbelievable to me.

"So really, I am honored to do this, and I am excited to do this. Everybody is going to tell you they'd like to get the four days off. But this situation is kind of unique, and I'm looking forward to it."

Maddon knows there will be some issues, some controversies over who gets picked, who gets to play, how certain guys are, and aren't, used. But he wants to savor what he can, too.

"What I'd like to be able to do," he said, "is slow it down and really enjoy it."

Rays manager Joe Maddon will savor chance to manage All-Star Game in St. Louis 07/04/09 [Last modified: Sunday, July 5, 2009 7:52am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays late-night bullpen shuffle: Alvarado, Pruitt down; Kolarek up


    The Rays shuffled their bullpen again after Tuesday's game, sending down struggling LHP Jose Alvarado along with RHP Austin Pruitt to Triple-A Durham, and turning next to LHP Adam Kolarek, who will make his major-league debut at age 28,

  2. Rays journal: Alex Cobb brilliant, Alex Colome worrying in 10-inning victory (w/video)

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — RHP Alex Cobb couldn't have been much better for the Rays on Tuesday, taking a no-hitter into the seventh inning while working eight solid. And Alex Colome couldn't have been much worse, blowing a two-run ninth-inning lead.

    Rays starter Alex Cobb carries a no-hitter into the seventh and pitches eight shutout innings in his best outing of the season.
  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Tuesday's Rays-Pirates game

    The Heater

    RHP Alex Cobb continues to look better and better, which could make the decision whether to trade him tougher. Cobb had a no-hitter through six and threw his biggest pitch with a 1-0 lead in the seventh, getting Josh Bell to roll into a double play.

  4. For good of the Rays, Tim Beckham should embrace move to second

    The Heater

    PITTSBURGH — The acquisition of slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria said a lot of things, most notably that the Rays are serious about making in-season moves to bolster their chances to make the playoffs, with a reliever, or two, next on the shopping list.

    PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 27:  Tim Beckham #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates with teammates after scoring during the eighth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on June 27, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) 700011399
  5. Rays at Pirates, 7:05 p.m. Wednesday, Pittsburgh

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Pirates

    7:05, PNC Park, Pittsburgh

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    PORT CHARLOTTE, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Blake Snell #4 of the Tampa Bay Rays poses for a portrait during the Tampa Bay Rays photo day on February 18, 2017 at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Floida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)