On June 7, the Angels fired manager Joe Maddon amidst a 12-game losing streak. Though seen as a surprising move by some, Maddon led the Angels to just a 130-148 record during his reign, likely emboldening GM Perry Minasian to take action.
Maddon’s firing brought the ascension of Phil Nevin as interim manager, and has thus far failed to produce the desired effect on a team that’s gone just 2-6 under new leadership. That said, it hasn’t all been bad, because it led to this delightful anecdote:
Fortunately, Baseball Prospectus was able to uncover the transcript of Minasian’s exit interview with Maddon. It’s been shortened for clarity here:
PERRY MINASIAN: Thanks for taking the time to meet with me on such short notice, Joe. This isn’t going to be easy, but I thought I owed it to you to come out here face-to-face to tell you th … wait, what the hell is that on your head?
JOE MADDON: What? Oh, I’d almost forgotten. It’s a mohawk! Not sure if you’ve seen but we’ve hit a bit of a roadblock recently and the vibes told me this would cheer the team up!
MINASIAN: That’s an, uh, inventive way of solving the problem. And “road block” is an interesting way to describe a 12-game losing streak …
MADDON: Look, Perry, I think I know where this is going. And while I appreciate the gentleness with which you’re trying to break the news, I get it and I agree. It’s time to revive the Rally Monkey just so we can re-bury his ass.
MINASIAN: … what?!
MADDON: I mean that’s what you do, right? You nix long-time Angels? First it was Albert Pujols. Then it was Justin Upton. I doubt Arte would let you dump Trout. You here to tell me you’re gonna leave a bag of poop on Tim Salmon’s lawn or something? Need me to call up Garrett Anderson and tell him his refrigerator is running? Didn’t think so, so the Rally Monkey seems like the logical option.
MINASIAN: It’s not the Rally Monkey we need to part ways with, Joe. That’s why I’m here to talk to you today.
MADDON: Oh my god it is Trout?!
MINASIAN: No, Joe. No, we’re parting ways with you.
MADDON: Is that a hair joke, Perry? Because it’s not very funny.
MINASIAN: It’s no joke, Joe. I spoke to Arte this morning, but the decision is mine and mine alone. We need a fresh voice… one a little less concerned with “vibes”… and we’ll be terminating your contract today.
MADDON: Oh, $#%%$#%$# you, you %$#%##. Are you #$@#$ kidding me, Perry? $%@#$.
[Continues for 10 minutes]
MINASIAN: I understand, Joe. Take the time you need
MADDON: We were 10 games above .500, like, six minutes ago! What the hell, Perry? We were the talk of the town! Well, we were the talk of a very small slice of the town! We were on a roll!
MINASIAN: Correct, and we believe the roster we’ve given you should be playing more like that team than one without a single victory in two weeks. This is a talented bunch, and I just think …
MADDON: A talented roster? What would you know about talent? You look like you haven’t slept since the last time the Angels made the playoffs. Look at your big-ass head and your baggy-ass eyes. Eyes that can’t see talent and can only see spreadsheets.
MINASIAN: Joe, let’s keep this professional.
MADDON: Droopy Dog-looking-ass GM.
MINASIAN: Joe, you look like someone left Robert De Niro in the dryer for too long.
MINASIAN: Look, I don’t think this conversation is going to be very productive anymo …
MADDON: Was it the $%#$%# analytics?
MINASIAN: … did the concept of analytics tell me to fire you? No, Joe.
MADDON: Don’t be cute with me, Perry. Was it the damn numbers? There are too many damn numbers now!
MINASIAN: … do you even remember Tampa, or …
MADDON: IT’S TOO MUCH, PERRY. THE NUMBERS ARE TOO MUCH. Is this because of what “the analytics” say about walking [Corey] Seager with the bases loaded? Because that was the right move.
MINASIAN: Well decisions like that didn’t help your case, if we’re being frank, but that’s not really what this is about, no. It’s more abou …
MADDON: Was it the cumulus cloud theme?
MINASIAN: Was it the what?
MADDON: Next road trip, I was gonna have us all dress up like different cumulus clouds. Thought it might cheer Trout up.
MINASIAN: No, Joe, it wasn’t …
MADDON: Was it the Adele thing?
MINASIAN: Again, that didn’t help, but …
MADDON: Players are too damn soft today, Perry. You’re too damn soft.
MINASIAN: Joe, you made him listen to every single Adele album, name every hit, then told him that was more than he’d ever have if he didn’t stop chasing the high fastball. That’s not the player development atmosphere we’re aiming for here.
MADDON: Yeah well maybe I should’ve gone with a “guess Shohei’s next team” theme because he’s sure as hell dumping your ass the second he can.
MINASIAN: That’s what we’re trying to avoid by making a move right now
MADDON: Should’ve saved money on this stupid mohawk and just bought the team 25 “Ohtani” Yankee or Dodger jerseys. You #$@#$@.
MINASIAN: Ok Joe, I think we’re done here. Thank you for all you’ve done for the Angels. We’ll be in touch.
MADDON: Which stoic, glove-first ex-catcher are you gonna hire next winter after you dump Nevin’s ass? Got Jason Varitek on speed dial yet? Checking in on Jeff Mathis? Gonna get Austin Hedges to be a player-manager?
MINASIAN: Very mature, Joe.
MADDON: You keep stupid Scioscia and his stupid $%@ face for 352 years yet you dump me the second I can’t make lemonade out of Ty $#$%# Buttrey.
MINASIAN: Ok I’ll be leaving now.
MADDON: No, wait. I’m sorry. Give it to me straight. Tell me what I could’ve done differently. Better bullpen management? Donate some ligaments to Rendon? Is this really about my glasses?
MINASIAN: You could’ve won a game in the last two weeks, Joe. That would’ve helped.
MADDON: ^#@$% you, Perry. You’ll be sorry when I’m managing the White Sox in a few weeks. I’m gonna $@$#@ haunt you guys. You’ll see.
Thank you for reading
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Phil 46-60 .434 and hired for 2023