If you’re a MLB manager looking for work, you’re likely checking your phone every couple of minutes for an email, phone call or text message regarding an interview with one of a few teams that are needing a new skipper. Even more so, you’re probably hoping that the message comes from Washington Nationals GM Mike Rizzo.
We’ve been speculating since midsummer as to who the new manager of the Nationals would be, and we’ve come up with names like Randy Knorr, Cal Ripken Jr. and Matt Williams, just to name a few. In the end, though, we really have no idea at this point, so let’s take a minute to check out the incredible situation that the next manager will be stepping into.
Usually, a team fires its manager after they’ve been playing poorly. Oftentimes, it’s the beginning of gutting the team in an attempt to improve it. In the case of the Nationals, Davey Johnson’s managerial contract expired and he elected to move on to a front office job with the ball club. Johnson leaves behind a team that is one of the best looking in all of baseball.
All around the diamond, the Nationals are loaded with superstars and game-changers. They still have one of the best rotations in baseball, the infielders got better the further along in the season they went, and the outfield was one of the least criticized in baseball both offensively and defensively.
With the exception of a bullpen that struggled, they are a pretty complete franchise.
Asides from improving the bullpen and maybe signing a high-profile free agent or two just to keep the future bright, the next manager of the Nationals is stepping into a perfect situation. All he needs to do continue on the same path as Johnson. The heavy lifting has already been done. The team is put together. And if the new skipper gets off track, Johnson is in the clubhouse ready to put things back on the right track.
No matter who manages the Washington Nationals, they’ll have a pretty good situation to come into. Rarely does a manager get to step into the dugout of a team as well put together as the Nationals. Now all that’s left to find out is who wants to take the wheel of Davey Johnson’s Cadillac.