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Sportress of Blogitude

Joe Maddon says spring training silliness will return for Cubs

Just because the Chicago Cubs are the defending World Series champions doesn’t mean Joe Maddon has any plans his eccentric  managerial methods.

If fact, Maddon put everyone on notice Tuesday that the unique approach to management he brought along to the Cubs organization from his tenure with the Tampa Bay Rays will once again play a role at spring training.

Maddon did stop short, however, of guaranteeing the return of any mimes, who made a surreal appearance at Cubs camp last spring. While he stopped short of tipping his hand, Maddon did allow for one hint of what kind of skullduggery may be in store.

“Magicians are OK,” Maddon said, via the Chicago Tribune. “You can anticipate a lot of the same.”

Not only did mimes lead stretching exercises for the Cubs last year during spring training in Mesa, Ariz., Maddon had other surprises for the team. For instance the day he donned tie-dye and drove his hippie van onto the conditioning field also made for a memorable scene.

Maddon also came up with an interesting philosophy last spring training about his approach to the team dress code: “If you think you look hot, you wear it.”

But what will Maddon pull out of his quirky bag of tricks this spring? The skipper wouldn’t say much, but he suggested it will start early.

“We already have something planned for the first day that you might not want to miss,” Maddon said of the Cubs’ first full squad workout scheduled for Saturday.

Stay tuned. Anything is possible. Heck, Maddon is the guy who once transformed Wrigley Field into a petting zoo, for crying out loud.