Catching up with Maddux
Had a chance to stop by Greg Maddux’s locker in the clubhouse yesterday after the first workout for pitchers and catchers — and before he bolted for the golf course, his typical routine during Spring Training.
Maddux talked about a number of things, one of which was how much more prepared players are physically coming into the spring now than they were in 1986 when he first broke into the Major Leagues. I found this quote to be interesting.
"I think it’s a full-time job now, keeping your body in shape," Maddux said. "When I first came up, you hear about the older guys and how they had to get jobs in the off-season. A lot of them drove trucks … UPS trucks. For a lot of guys, that was the job to get in the winter.
"Now with the money guys are making, they don’t have to work. Now you have more time to take care of yourself. That’s kind of your job."
It’s funny because there’s few times when you watch Maddux pitch that you find yourself thinking, hey, this guy made his Major League debut in 1986. Or, for me, when I was a junior in high school. Wow, that’s a sobering thought.
Consider that summer of 1986 when Maddux broke into the Major Leagues. Here’s who was on that Cubs staff: Dennis Eckersley (before he starting closing), Scott Sanderson, Steve Trout, Jamie Moyer and Rick Sutcliffe. How again did these guys lose 90 games?