Sep 21, 2012; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson reacts in the dugout during the seventh inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE

Is A Davey Johnson Return Imminent for 2013?

As was reported earlier today on, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo and current manager Davey Johnson have had preliminary conversations about Johnson’s potential return to his managerial post for next season.

Johnson has guided the Nats to a 133-102 record since taking over in the middle of the 2011 season for Jim Riggleman after his abrupt retirement. He is under contract with the Nationals for 2013, but is only slated for a role as a consultant. Rizzo, however, would like to see Johnson come back and continue to manage. According to’s Bill Ladson, Rizzo was effusive in his praise of Johnson. “He gets players to play to the maximum level. He has done everything these players want to do. He commands the respect of the players. He motivates and allows them to be as good as they can be.”

Given the Nats’ unprecedented success, it should come as no surprise that Rizzo would like to have Johnson back. The main hurdle for the process, however, is Johnson’s age. He turns 70 this season, and could be looking forwards to retirement. But based on his comments to Ladson, Johnson seems to reciprocate the team’s interest in keeping him as manager. “I feel good about my situation… Those things will be addressed after the season.”

If Johnson wants to return, it is nearly certain that he will be managing the team in 2013. Given the way these Nats have been playing, the fans should be pretty happy if Davey decides not to hang ‘em up.

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  • Jared Book

    I think that Davey returns for two reasons. One, the team is obviously successful and two, there is no obvious manager-in-waiting. The worst thing to do is throw a manager into the fire with a team trying to defend a playoff spot. Are there replacements in house and out there? Absolutely. Do I think they necessarily want to look for one? Depends. But as St Louis and the White Sox show, having a first year manager isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, as Boston shows, you better get it right.