CHICAGO (670 The Score) -- The widespread belief across the MLB landscape that Cubs manager Joe Maddon will part ways with the organization at season's end was evident in the line of questioning that Maddon received before Chicago's game at St. Louis on Friday evening.
As Maddon was peppered with questions about his future, he displayed a pensive, reflective mood.
''I am having a pretty good time, and I will (continue to)," Maddon said when asked how he's holding up amid the hoopla about his job status. "Nothing has been decided yet. Quite frankly, I am doing pretty good.
"I hate to disappoint everyone, but I don't (get down). When you get to do what I have been doing here the last several years, it's hard to get upset or get down. I talked to a friend whose wife has cancer. Recently, my uncle passed away. Why would you let a game drag you down like that? I feel really good about the future, really strong about the future. Why would you let certain moments drag you down like that? This has just been wonderful, just wonderful."
Maddon was asked whether he had any regrets about this season. He didn't find anything to lament in that regard.
"There isn't really anything I could pinpoint," he said. "I like what we have done a lot. This year has been difficult for a lot of different reasons. Even those who have been critical of what happened last year, why would you be? You can see how tough getting 95 wins is right now. So there is nothing to be hypercritical about at all. I am so proud of this group that we put out there. I have nothing to amend about the season at all. We have had some tough moments, and injuries played a part as well -- but overall I cannot be more pleased and proud of this group."
Friday marked the first time that it seemed the 65-year-old Maddon was using the past tense to discuss his time as Cubs manager.
"I would tell you straight up if I think I should have done something different," Maddon said. "I don't. I am not being egotistical by any means. I was asked to do some things differently this year, and I did. I have actually kind of enjoyed it. I feel I have grown as a coach, and the millennialism we faced early in the year, I feel good about that too. I really feel like I learned a lot this year. So I am pleased about that."
Maddon's contract expires at season's end. It was suggested that Maddon wouldn't be out of work long after Sunday, to which he had a response.
"I am not conceding anything right now," he said of his future. "What I am looking forward to is getting in that car and driving to our pad in Hazelton (Pennsylvania), which is on this really cool little golf course. And I need some work with my pal Frankie, the golf pro. I will then be able to plot and plan about whatever is going to be around the bend. I am really excited about the future."
Maddon proudly stood by all he has accomplished in five seasons with the Cubs -- four playoff appearances, three National League Championship Series berths, two NL Central titles and a World Series championship.
"Don't forget we were in three NLCS in a row," Maddon said. "We were just a couple of knocks away from three World Series in a row. If people want to focus on thoughts, focus on that one. So maybe it's inevitable that you eventually come to this conclusion."
Maddon acknowledged he has had some poignant one-on-one moments with his players in the past few days as the Cubs have collapsed with a nine-game losing streak to miss the playoffs.
"Sometimes you feel like Father Joe," Maddon said. "They have come to me. They read and they see. I have had some really insightful in-depth talk with our guys, and it has been awesome."
Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.