Why Joe Maddon and the LA Angels didn't work out

Toronto Blue Jays v Los Angeles Angels
Toronto Blue Jays v Los Angeles Angels / Meg Oliphant/GettyImages

The LA Angels 2022 season has been filled with lots of highs and lows as a quarter of the season has been completed so far. Going from being first in the AL West, to dropping 14 straight games, the trajectory of the Angels this year is just up in the air. After losing that many games, someone has to take the fall for the struggles of the team, which in this case was manager Joe Maddon.

Spending the last two-plus seasons as the Angels manager there has been one glaring issue between the Angels front office and how Joe Maddon managed his baseball teams. They both had different visions for how the Halos were going to win games.

If you've seen the movie Moneyball, you see the disconnect between the front office and Billy Beane, and the manager of the Oakland A's Art Howe. Where general manager Beane formulated a new team through the use of analytics, but couldn't be tested because of Howe's refusal to play the lineup they desired.

There is a similar conflict of interest with the LA Angels.

Within the last few days since Joe Maddon's firing, it has come out that both him and the LA Angels' front office did view the game differently. Maddon wanted to use his baseball IQ to work through different challenges that arise throughout the game. However, Angels GM Perry Minasian saw it differently. He wanted the team to rely more on analytics and stats instead of baseball IQ. Also ironically a very similar conflict with the Moneyball team of 2002.

Obviously Joe Maddon has an immense amount of success and baseball knowledge that nobody is questioning. With the new age of baseball however, it seems that many teams may think his way of coaching is obsolete. With small ball tactics and emphasis on flexibility, the coaching style he embodies is almost unheard of anymore. The reason why? Because sluggers are constantly scoring runs with the long ball instead of manufacturing runs while sacrificing outs. Teams would rather take their chances by saving outs, and try to score runs by simply hitting and getting on base.

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Overall Maddon is a great manager in the MLB, but he just didn't fit with the LA Angels. He can definitely have success with other teams in the league, however, he would need to make sure the front office and his ideas of playing baseball align.