Maddon picks 'zany' first theme trip for '16

Cubs manager: Players must wear eccentric suits on upcoming trip to Pittsburgh

Maddon picks 'zany' first theme trip for '16

CHICAGO -- Last year, the Cubs wore pajamas on the flight back from Los Angeles and players could wear shorts to Miami. The first theme trip this year will be Sunday when they travel to Pittsburgh for a three-game series, and it will be what manager Joe Maddon called "a minimalist zany suit trip."

"It's not your typical Hugo Boss thing, not Italian cut by any means," Maddon said Saturday. "Mine will feature tulips."

In Spring Training, Maddon was surfing the Internet for ideas and found a website that featured unique suits. Some are camouflage colored, some are harlequin patterned. Maddon bought two -- the tulip suit and a leopard print.

"Being a Lafayette [College] Leopard, I thought it was appropriate," he said.

Catcher Tim Federowicz, called up from Triple-A Iowa on Friday, may borrow the leopard print suit. He didn't have time to shop.

There's more to the theme trip than just wearing the outrageous outfit on the team plane.

"If you're seen at any time without part of your suit on, it's a $100 fine -- unless you're working out," Maddon said. "Like going to the ballpark, in the hotel, going out for Starbucks in the morning, if you're seen without any part of the suit -- [you could wear] the coat, tie, pair of pants, shoes, socks, some method or form of the outfit. If you're seen without it, it's a [$100]."

The money will go to the Cubs clubhouse guys.

The reason for the theme?

"Part of it was that we never get dressed up," Maddon said. "We're going to get dressed up with this suit. I didn't want it to be a conventional suit. And I found these. ... It was my weird mind working."

So, heads up Pittsburgh.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.