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Saturday, October 25, 2008

The new coaches - whew!

Willie Randolph not among them. That doesn't mean he can't become the Nats next manager. There's no rule that says it has to be someone on staff. But I'm comforted that the brain trust realized it would send a very bad message to put him on the bench now. One seat away and the speculation would start with the first losing streak. Plus, he's not a very good manager.

That said, I think the next manager IS on this staff if the so-called brain trust decides Manny Acta is not the man. I'll repeat that I don't fall in with that line of thinking in any way. I'd rather judge Acta when he's playing with a full deck.

I don't know a lot about any of these new faces. As another blogger wrote yesterday - FireJimBow, I think - do coaches make that much difference? I think a very bad coach or an exceptional coach can make a difference in one direction or the other.

Most don't fall into either category. Most will have their success determined by the quality of the player they are coaching. Leo Mazzone looked like a much better pitching coach in Atlanta when he had Maddux, Glavine and Smoltz than he did in Baltimore when he had *** when he had *** I don't even know who he had. They weren't very good and the best chef can't make chicken salad out of chicken feathers.

Pat Corrales, the Post said, will stay with the organization as a consultant. Consulting on what?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Jeez - Real Life Intervenes again

Just read this on the Washington Post's site after following the link from Nats320.

I trust everyone joins me in wishing Jim Bowden a full and speedy recovery. Cancer has touched my life and my wife's life many times, through dear friends and family. It is evil.

Forget the whole GM thing and what I think (or anyone thinks) about the state of the Nationals here. Fortunately, I can list just as many success stories among my friends and family when it comes to fighting cancer. It can be done and I'm pulling with all my might for Jim Bowden to become one of those success stories.

As 320 said so well: Best Wishes, Jim.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Dear Milwaukee

As a faithful Brewers fan, I have followed the managerial search closely and with interest. I believe without question that Willie Randolph is the man who best meets your criteria.
Pretty please hire him and soon.

OK, maybe it won't work. But we owe it to ourselves as Nats fans to make sure we do all we can to get Willie Randolph hired - somewhere else.
Willie might be a very nice guy. Those I know who know him say he is indeed. Good baseball man. Not a very good manager.
Yes, the Nationals aren't considering him as manager. Yet. I'm not a guy who is on the anti-Manny wagon. Not at all. I don't believe we've been given a fair chance to judge him based on the talent he's been given. I'm in no rush to see him go. But I pick up a strong vibe that the braintrust (such as it is) wants to have its next manager very close at hand in case it decides to make a change in 2009.
If it is Randolph, they will have gone backward.

The possibility of Don Baylor as a coach is one I like. As a future manager? I'm not terribly sure but I'd be behind that way more than I'd be behind Randolph. Hell, the Mets lost five of six to THE NATIONALS in 2007 to ruin their playoff chances.

Unrelated, check out Nats320 (cool links on the right) for some scoop on 2009 uniforms. Baseball teams have a little NASCAR in them - change the look every now and then to keep fools like me happily shelling out the cash for the latest.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

One quick question

When is a key change coming, IS a key change coming? When do we see a change that says the team is taking the disaster of 2008 seriously? OK, I guess that's more than one.

A bunch of coaches, none of them in crucial roles except the hitting coach who was pretty much replaced in September anyway. Video people. The team doctor. Oooohhhh *** I can feel the difference already.

Someone posted in the comments section of the Nationals Journal a rumor about Willie Randolph as bench coach and possible replacement if a managerial change is deemed necessary next season. Ask the Mets how that one worked out.

The Rays, meanwhile, are within a game of the World Series. The Rays. The RAYS.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Paging someone smart, paging someone smart

That leaves me out.

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays, or just Rays or whatever, are in the playoffs. I know this is true because I turned on the TV last night and there they were, winning ANOTHER playoff game. And it said RAYS right there on their uniforms.

Imagine the uproar if this little blog existed a year ago and I wrote, "A year from now, the nation will watch with jaws on the ground as the Washington Nationals participate in baseball's playoffs."

The laughter would have been loud and long.

But here they are, the Rays. The freaking Rays. About to move one step closer to the WORLD SERIES!

How did this happen? Could anyone have seen this coming? Did all the pieces fall into place all of a sudden? Did they catch lightning in a bottle, pull a Nats of 2005 and just keep it going all year?


What I'm driving at - is there any realistic reason to think this could happen to our favorite team in 2009? Should I be full of hope or just continue to be green with envy?