ST. PETERSBURG -- Angels manager Mike Scioscia is obviously well acquainted with Rays manager Joe Maddon, who served as Scioscia's bench coach for the Angels. He noted that he considered Maddon "the perfect guy" to join the Rays and manage the young talent in the organization.
"He's always been incredible at player development -- whether he was working in player development or bringing young players along as he was coaching," Scioscia said, before the teams met here on Wednesday night. "No surprises there. As far as some of the themed road trips, I'm not going to say it's a surprise, but it's vintage Joe. It's just the way he is. He loves to connect with people. That's just one way he does it.
"I think one thing Joe does as good as anybody is connecting with the passion that players have to play the game of baseball. Sometimes, it overlaps in other areas, with the themed road trips or whatever the thing du jour is that he might have going. But Joe's very insightful."