Joe Maddon is the biggest name available on the MLB managerial free agent market, and he reportedly has two teams at the top of his preferred destinations list.
According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports, the Los Angeles Angels are "Maddon's preference," followed by the San Diego Padres. The Philadelphia Phillies - who fired manager Gabe Kapler on Thursday - are third on Madden's list.
Maddon's coaching career started with the California Angels in 1979, and he went on to manage some of their farm teams. He then joined the Angels in 1995 and took over as interim manager during the 1996 and 1999 seasons, accumulating a 27-24 record.
The future Baseball Hall of Fame inductee was on the Angels staff when they won the 2002 World Series over the San Francisco Giants. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays (now Rays) gave Maddon his first full-time managerial gig in 2006, and he stayed there until 2014.
Maddon led the Rays to the 2008 World Series, where they fell to his hometown Philadelphia Phillies. He left the Rays and became manager of the Chicago Cubs in 2015, leading them to the World Series in 2016 - and they reached the NLCS three straight years from 2015-17.
But after a miserable September collapse that saw the Cubs miss the playoffs for the first time in five years, team President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein announced that Maddon wouldn't be back in 2019, following the expiration of his contract.
The Angels fired manager Brad Ausmus after one season following a disappointing 72-90 record. The Padres finished last in the NL West with a 70-92 record, and manager Andy Green was let go as a result. We'll find out soon enough which team manages to come away with Maddon, a three-time Manager of the Year.
Angels Are The Favorites
Multiple reports have suggested that the Angels are the favorites to get Maddon. The club has only made the playoffs once since 2010, and they've missed it in five straight years now. The Angels can't keep wasting Mike Trout's prime years, and given Maddon's long track record of success, it's hard to think of a better candidate than him. It only feels like a matter of time until he's announced as their new manager.