Gammons Notes: What’s next for Joe Maddon?, Yusmeiro Petit, Giancarlo Stanton and more

joe maddon

1. When Joe Maddon opted out of his Tampa Bay contract, he had nothing in his site. “I really have no idea what will happen,” Maddon said, driving across the country in his RV. “But it was an opportunity I have to take.”

Maddon’s agent Alan Nero advised Lou Piniella to take a year off and work for Fox before returning to the Cubs, which gave Piniella a well-earned breather. The same could happen with Maddon. Or some job—and, let’s face it, the Cubs are the one situation that makes sense in 2015—could become available.

If Maddon takes a television job or an internship with Tom Seaver on his vineyards, opportunities could open. Cubs? Maybe. Mets? Unlikely. Dodgers? Maybe. Phillies? Hey, Joe’s a Pennsylvania guy, and once managed Ruben Amaro, whom he still calls “Ben.”

In fact, Maddon has managed two general managers—Amaro and Washington’s Mike Rizzo.

2. As great as Madison Bumgarner has been, Yusmeiro Petit has saved the Giants this post-season, as well.

Go back to Game Two of the NLDS, when he came in and threw a 6 1 0 0 3 7 in the Saturday night, 18 inning game that broke Washington’s back. One run and the series might have gone to the team most managers thought was the best in the league.

Then Game Four of the NLCS. Vogelsong didn’t get to the fourth, the Cardinals were up 4-3 when Petit came in, and he threw a 3 10 0 01 4, left with a 7-4 lead and the Giants used three relievers to close it out.

Then Saturday Ryan Vogelsong became the 17 starter in 20 years to fail to get through the third. Teams were 2-14 in those games, but Petit’s 3 2 0 0 0 2 got them to a 6-4 lead and Jeremy Affeldt. 12 innings, 0 runs, three series-altering wins.

3. During the season, we heard dire predictions about how replays and home plate decisions might lead to chaotic embarrassment in the post-season. Well, other than one minor flareup in the Washington-San Francisco series, there have been no umpiring controversies, no replay messes. Saturday when Panik did not get the bunt down and Juan Perez tried to pick Arias off second, Jeff Kellogg, who may be the best umpire in the business, called him safe, replay showed the call to be correct…in fact, Ned Yost said he thought Kellogg’s call was correct but he had nothing to lose.

Kellogg will be behind the plate in Game Six Tuesday.

4. Giancarlo Stanton just got back from a vacation in Europe, but indicated he may spend much of the winter living in Miami, preparing for the Marlins attempts to sign him to a longterm contract. I know we hear “it isn’t about the money,” but in Stanton’s case, if he is convinced that the Marlins are going to try to be consistent contenders like the Cardinals, Giants and franchises like that, he is going to listen. But that’s a long way off.

This is the Miami dilemma: they have to try to sign him. He can be the city’s first baseball idol, replacing Lebron James as Top Dog.

But they cannot trade him before he goes to free agency at the end of the 2016 season. If they do, owner Jeffrey Loria’s credibility will take such a further hit that he may have to sell for the Marlins to ever be accepted.

5. General managers from other teams don’t think the Giants will let Pablo Sandoval go, but Sunday one member of their ownership group said there is a swelling thinking that the Red Sox will end up signing The Panda. “The bigger the stage, the better he plays,” says one Giant official. “He would love Boston.” Of course, the Giants sell out every game, the debt service on the ballpark is paid off in 2017 and it is one of the most valuable franchises in the game.

6. The Royals bullpen would be even better had Luke Hochevar not hurt his elbow and undergone Tommy John Surgery last March. But Hochever, who in 2013 was 5-2, 1.93 with an 81-17 SO-BB ratio out of the Kansas City bullpen, could be a free agent with many suitors this winter. “At worst, he could be completely healthy by the All-star Break,” says one GM. “He will be a big item this winter.”


  1. Thx for great notes–enjoyed very much!

    (p.s. #3. Salvador Perez (KC) tried to pick off Arias?)

  2. Bertin Lefkovic says:

    I predict that the Giants resign Kung Fu Panda. The Red Sox are more likely to trade for Adrian Beltre or Josh Donaldson than give Panda the years he is going to want. The Giants are more likely to take the chance on him since he is already such an important part of their team.

    With both Cespedes and Stanton one year away from free agency, how hard would it be for the Red Sox to build a package for Stanton around Cespedes? What is the value difference between the two players? I know that they just signed him, but would Castillo, Cespedes, and Middlebrooks be enough to land Stanton? If not, how about Cespedes, Betts or Holt, and Middlebrooks?

    • Why would the Marlins trade Stanton for one year of Cespedes? They would want long term control over any player they got. As for prospects, it would take Betts, Owens, and Holt to even start negotiations.

      • Donnie Bandera says:

        Betts / Owens / Craig / Swihart would be what the Marlins would seek in return for Stanton and Koehler

        • Bertin Lefkovic says:

          I didn’t realize that the Marlins still had control over Stanton for two years. I thought that he was going to be a free agent in 2016, like Cespedes.

          That said, wouldn’t two Cuban players like Castillo and Cespedes have more long-term cost-effectiveness and marketability in a city like Miami than Stanton, who will probably have to be paid $250MM over 10 years at the very least, which is way out of the Marlins’ league.

          Castillo is going to cost $71.5MM over the next six years. If the Marlins give Cespedes a 5 year extension, it probably won’t cost them more than $90MM over the same six-year period. That seems much more sensible for a team like the Marlins.

          Add Betts or Holt and Middlebrooks and it seems like a pretty fair deal for both teams. It makes much more sense than watching Stanton walk as a free agent and getting a compensatory draft pick.

          Being a Yankees fan, I hope that the Red Sox are unable to trade for Stanton, but if there was a team that could get him, they seem like the best bet.