In his team’s National League division series against the San Francisco Giants, Maddon has moved position players around the diamond with as much forethought as Garry Kasparov moves chess pieces.
He was bringing his closer, Aroldis Chapman, into the game to pitch in the eighth inning with runners at first and second, none out and the Cubs clinging to a 3-2 lead.
After the Cubs’ Kris Bryant answered with a two-run homer in the ninth off Sergio Romo, the game did not conclude until it was 5 hours 4 minutes long, when Joe Panik doubled in the bottom of the 13th.
When Chapman was with the Yankees, Manager Joe Girardi used him only once in the middle of an inning — and it was by necessity, after a 97-minute rain delay.
After the loss to Seattle, Chapman met with Maddon and told him that although he would pitch whenever called upon, he felt more comfortable beginning an inning than entering in the middle.