Tuesday, October 24, 2006
The Managerial Situation
For the most part, I have stayed out of the fray over the Nationals ongoing search for a new manager. I jumped in back on October 6th, getting a kick out of SenatorNat predicting that Washington would interview Terry Pendleton for the job--well before it became public. I stated in that post, even if Pendleton was not the eventual hire, it was a good sign, that both Stan Kasten and Jim Bowden are looking "outside the box"-- for new talent, not recycled "good baseball" men.
Since that first week in October, Lou Piniella signed on with the Cubs, Joe Girardi backed out, citing family-- Joey Cora and Cecil Cooper were told, they would not get the job. Davey Johnson is not being considered. Dusty Baker publicly wants the job, but has not heard anything. And now, Pendleton has also backed out of the situation.
All those development are OK WITH ME. Being the diehard fan that I am, I read everything, and I mean EVERYTHING about Our Washington Nationals each and every day. Whether its the main stream Washington Post, Times, Nationals.com, ESPN.com/MLB, Rotoworld,WTOP, and, most importantly, every single NATS BLOG. Every Single Day--EVERY SINGLE ONE. Everyone's angles and takes on ALL THINGS NATS is always interesting to me.
What has got me fired up, is the ongoing SNIPING and BITCHING, all over the place, about the Nationals hiring process for that new Manager. Calling Stan Kasten incompetent and cheap for not hiring Expensive Available Talent like Piniella, Girardi, Baker and Buck Showalter. On one blog, the host was challenged as being a racist, when he noted that the final KNOWN candidates are all minorities and that The Nationals are just looking to please folks after letting Frank Robinson go.
This has got to stop. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, that's what our country is all about, but we really don't know what is going on. And, as I commented, on FARID's The Beltway Boys--Stan Kasten and Jim Bowden are in a Win-Win Situation right now. Our Washington Nationals are not going to win anything next year, possibly not even when the new Stadium is scheduled to open in 2008, as they are developing, evaluating and finding even more talent--Kasten and Bowden may get lucky, find a fresh young face that can grow with our young team. But, even if they are wrong, or it doesn't work out, it will not matter. The talent will continue to mature, and if management feels its necessary, then, go out and find that perfect manager that can bring the horses home--in first place. Look what happened to the Detroit Tigers. Alan Trammel was given the job to nurture a floundering franchise with good young talent. Jim Leyland took them to the World Series. This happens all the time.
Clearly in the past, I have stated, time and time again, I am not a big fan of Jim Bowden. Others could have done a far better job with our limited resources, but Stan Kasten has been nothing short of a GODSEND to this franchise, thus far. Hands on in everyway--just ask anyone in Section 320 how Mr. Kasten personally has come to our section to take care of some situations. Making sure everyone is happy. At RFK during games, that man is all over the place, wanting to make everything worthwhile, despite all of RFK's shortcomings, for every single fan. A tireless worker that, from my perspective, wants to get it right, even if its not during yours, mine, or anyone else's timeframe.
I apologize for the rant, its something that I thought I would never do, but, I truly believe everything will turn out OK, in the long run. Our Nationals don't need to waste $5 million per season for a manager of a developing team. Use that on Alfonso Soriano, or a Starting Pitcher--so we have something to cheer for in 2007.
Despite all our personal knowledge of baseball and what we feel is right or not, none of us has actually run a franchise. Stan Kasten has, and successfully, for many seasons. Give the man a chance.