Fri, 20 May 2022

Greg Maddux: 'I was there' on nearly signing with Yankees in 1992

Field Level Media
19 Jan 2022, 11:05 GMT+10

First-ballot Hall of Fame pitcher Greg Maddux's credentials as a Major League Baseball pitcher have never been in question. But his most famous address nearly was.

In a recent interview with David Cone's "Toeing the Slab" podcast, Maddux revealed that he nearly joined the New York Yankees following the 1992 season, Maddux's final season in Chicago during his first stint with the Cubs.

"I was there. I went there to sign with the Yankees," Maddux said. "It's not college. I didn't go there just for a recruiting trip. You go there to sign the contract."

So why didn't he?

"I don't know who it was ... some of the higher-ups ... one of the guys had a heart attack. And that's why I wasn't made an offer.

"There were no cell phones then, so it wasn't like you could just use the phone whenever you wanted. And I remember landing in Chicago and calling (my agent), and he said, 'The Braves were able to make you an offer.'"

It's an incredible story. On the other hand, the New York Daily News in 2014 offered that then-Yankees GM Gene Michael did in fact offer a deal to Maddux, reportedly more than the Braves eventually ended up paying him.

Whichever version is closer to truth, Maddux, of course, went on to pitch 11 mostly brilliant seasons with the Atlanta Braves, where he earned three straight Cy Young awards from 1993-1995 (giving him four straight overall), six All-Star appearances, 10 Gold Gloves and a World Series championship in 1995.

Overall, Maddux compiled 355 wins, a Wins Above Replacement of 106.6, eight All-Star appearances and 18 Gold Gloves in a 23-year career with Chicago, Atlanta, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Diego Padres.

--Field Level Media

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