MLB Washington Nationals

Washington Nationals: 5 Managerial Candidates

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Five 2014 Nats Managerial Candidates

Robert Deutsch- USA TODAY Sports

At 41-40 after 81 games, Washington would be the first to tell you this is not what they expected. Being the defending NL East Champions, coming off a 98 win season and having their manager in his swan song season, everything seemed lined up for a huge year in DC. Thus far, it's been the polar opposite of that. Washington will win a series, then lose a series, spending all of June winning one, losing two, then winning two and losing one ... so much so that they finished with a 13-13 record in June. Washington's offense has been the main issue, though having games like yesterday where they exploded for 13 runs against the Mets in a 13-2 blowout are positive signs as they dominated both a sub-par team and a good young pitcher while hitting four home runs.

Davey Johnson's job is most likely under lock and key, as an absolutely horrific breakdown of the team record-wise would warrant a firing, but nothing less than that. This is Johnson's supposed last season as the team's manager, though if Washington's disappointing season continues, Johnson probably would give it another go in 2014. Washington has plenty of time and ground, to make up, so there is still plenty of time for Washington to live up to expectations. With that said, it never hurts to take a look at who could be filling out the lineup card in 2014 for Washington. They could go with company policy and promote from within, but with their recent success they may want someone established or with name power. Here are five candidates.

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Don Mattingly - Dodgers Manager

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There were rumors earlier in the season that Mattingly could end up in Washington is Los Angeles fired him after their disappointing start. However, L.A. is starting to surge and put some wins together, having won eight of their last 10. If L.A. is able to salvage their season, it will most likely save Mattingly's job, but if they do not, or the Dodgers decides to go in a different direction, Mattingly could be a good candidate.

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Randy Knorr - Washington Bench Coach

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Knorr could be the top "promote from within" guy Mike Rizzo looks to. He's currently the bench coach for Davey Johnson, and has managed most of Washington's players in the Minors. It would be a seamless transition from Davey to Knorr because of his current presence.

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Trent Jewett - Washington Third Base Coach

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Jewett is another guy who Washington could promote, and is almost a clone of Knorr's description as a candidate having managed Washington's Minor Leagues, knows a lot of the players, seamless transition, etc.

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Terry Collins - Mets Manager

Robert Deutsch- USA TODAY Sports

I know what you're thinking: "Terry Collins? What's wrong with you?" Collins makes sense because he knows the team from managing against them, and has spent a lot of time in the NL East the past couple years. Collins has shown, up until this year, that he was able to do more with less, as New York has been slated to lose more than 100 games the past few years, and has stayed under 90 losses. Collins probably wants to win, and could be a dark horse candidate.

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Bo Porter - Astros Manager

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Porter was presumed to be the manager in waiting if he stayed with the team through Davey's tenure. Players like him, he has some fire to him and his Houston team, which was expected to be a joke, has been a tougher matchup than most expected. It will be interesting to see how committed to Houston Porter is if Washington's job opens up. They allowed him to take the job and gain some experience and Houston's rebuild is not a one-season job. Porter could very well stay in Houston, but Washington is built to win now.