Maddux Reports to Spring Training — as Instructor

Greg Maddux knew it was time to quit pitching. He just wasn't ready to quit baseball altogether.

The four-time Cy Young Award winner rejoined the San Diego Padres on Wednesday as a spring training instructor. He pitched for the Padres from 2007 until he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in August.

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Though his position is only temporary, Maddux hopes it will lead to a permanent coaching job. Maddux, who is eighth all-time with 355 career wins, retired in December after 23 big league seasons.

"I love baseball," said Maddux, who was 355-227 with a 3.16 ERA in a career with the Padres, Dodgers, Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs.

"It's what I've always done. It's really all I know. I knew it was time to stop playing a couple of years ago," he said. "I know I probably want to get into coaching, somehow, some way later. This happened a little quick. I'm down here trying to get a taste of it and see what the coaches do before the workouts and after workouts. ... There's a lot that goes into it."

On Monday, Padres manager Bud Black said Maddux's role was undefined. On Wednesday, Maddux, who passed up a similar opportunity with the Cubs, observed and asked questions of Black's coaching staff to get a feel for what they did. He also watched his former teammates participate in a bullpen session before heading to the outfield to shag fly balls.

Maddux said that not being on the field with his teammates has finally allowed the notion of retirement to set in.

"I feel like my first day of retirement really started today," Maddux said. "The last three months ... Christmas time, New Years, has always been the same. I'm sure next week when I'm driving back home is when it will really kick in."

 Maddux, who lives in Las Vegas, is expected to make one or two more trips to camp.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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