Cubs, Maddon remember legendary Minoso

Cubs, Maddon remember legendary Minoso

MESA, Ariz. -- Minnie Minoso used to show up in the visiting manager's office at U.S. Cellular Field when the Rays were in town to talk baseball with Joe Maddon.

"He liked how we did things, that's what he would always want to talk about," Maddon said Sunday of the White Sox slugger, who passed away. "He liked the team, how we played, very complimentary. I tried to speak a little Spanish to him. He was like that with everybody. He just liked to talk about how our team played."

Minoso liked Maddon so much, he showed up at the manager's introductory news conference in November at the Cubby Bear bar and the two met later at Sluggers to celebrate.

"He used to come see us, see me," Maddon said. "We got to be friends the last couple years. He always came by to say hello. Always upbeat, always friendly. He was one of my dad's favorites. Minnie Minoso -- how could you not love Minnie Minoso? It's sad. I don't even know if he was ill or not. I was expecting to hang out at Sluggers with him."

The Cubs joined the White Sox and all of Major League Baseball in mourning Minoso's death.

"We are deeply saddened by the passing of Minnie Minoso," Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts said in a statement. "Having recently lost one of our all-time greats Ernie Banks, we share the heartache with the White Sox organization and fans everywhere who were blessed to enjoy the talent, heart and passion of Mr. White Sox. He will be forever known as an electric offensive player and great ambassador for the game of baseball."

Minoso's death comes one month after Banks.

"A couple icons are gone," Maddon said.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.