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MLB rules no tampering found in Cubs' hiring of Joe Maddon

NEW YORK -- Major League Baseball has ruled that the Chicago Cubs did not violate tampering rules when they pursued manager Joe Maddon last fall.

The commissioner's office released a statement Wednesday clearing the Cubs of wrongdoing about six months after Tampa Bay accused Chicago of tampering with its manager before Maddon opted out of his contract with the Rays.

"The investigation produced no finding of a violation of Major League Rule 3(k) on tampering," MLB said in the statement.

"We're glad the process is over," Cubs GM Jed Hoyer said. "They did a thorough process, obviously there was no wrongdoing and we're glad that was announced today."

"I suppose you could use (the word) vindication just because it was a public process," he added.

The Rays stood by their request for an investigation.

"We make our decisions based on the facts at hand and the processes we trust," Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg said in a statement. "We can never be certain of the outcomes."

The Cubs announced Oct. 31 that Rick Renteria had been fired after one season as manager and that Maddon was hired.

Maddon opted out of his contract with Tampa Bay soon after Rays executive Andrew Friedman left the club to take over the Los Angeles Dodgers in mid-October.

Cubs executive Theo Epstein has said the Cubs checked with MLB to be sure Maddon was OK to talk with other clubs before negotiating with him.

"We're all glad that's in the rearview mirror now and glad that it turned out the way that it did," Maddon said.

Information from ESPNChicago's Jesse Rogers was used in this report.