Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Joe Maddon brings in magician to help end Cubs’ slump

In the midst of a five-game losing streak, Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon dipped into his bag of tricks to try and create some magic for his team.

And no, he didn't pull a rabbit or penguin out of his hat.

"Joe started talking about [baseball] magic and the next thing I know there was a magician there," second baseman Addison Russell said afterward.

Maddon said he thought of the idea "on the plane or bus" after the Cubs' weekend series in St. Louis, where they were swept. They were on a season-high five-game losing streak, having fallen 11½ games behind the Cardinals going into Tuesday's games.

"It was about time," Maddon said. "Tough series in St. Louis. I don't want our guys to get all distraught for the wrong reasons. We played a good game. They beat us. Let's keep moving it forward."

So Simon, a magician, performed several tricks for the team.
It seemed everyone's favorite involved a crushed, empty soda can.

"He then uncrushed it, sealed it, then popped the can and poured the now full can of liquid into a cup," pitcher Jon Lester said. "It was amazing."

Maddon's unusual tactic seemed to work. And, with the Mets acting as lovely assistants at Citi Field, the Cubs beat New York 1-0 on Tuesday. 

And the postgame music selection in the clubhouse after the win? It was magic-themed, of course, according to the Chicago Tribune's Mark Gonzales:
Now if only Simon could make that World Series jinx disappear.

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