Washington Nationals Editorial: Should The Nats Hire Don Mattingly As Manager If Fired By Dodgers?


With the MLB Playoffs now reaching the League Championship Series, the managerial search continues for the Washington Nationals. They have interviewed names such as Phil Nevin, Alex Cora, Dusty Baker, and Bud Black and they are scheduled to interview Ron Wotus and Ron Gardenhire. However, one name could be available real soon if the Dodgers decide to change their manager.

After losing Game 5 of the NLDS to the New York Mets at home on Thursday night, the hot seat is squarely on Don Mattingly as his team did not make the NLCS despite having a $300 million payroll. Since Andrew Friedman has only been the president in Los Angeles for one season, he could look to make a change at manager. If he does, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports and MLB Network says the Nationals might be interested. Here is what Heyman wrote in yesterday’s Inside Baseball Column:

"“The Nationals-owning Lerners have show interest in Mattingly in the past, though they seem to be moving more quickly in their search, perhaps indicating they believe they can find an excellent choice from among the rather inspired list which includes at least Bud Black, Dusty Baker, Ron Gardenhire, Ron Wotus, Alex Cora and others.” (h/t Heyman, CBS Sports)"

In his five seasons as manager of the Dodgers, Mattingly has a .551 winning percentage and Los Angeles has won the NL West three of those five season, but they have fallen short of their ultimate goal of at least reaching the World Series. Plus, the TBS cameras did catch Andre Ethier yelling at his manager during the second inning of Game 5. Los Angeles did not have a better roster than the Mets during the series, but would Washington hire another manager who most say has underachieved each of the last three years?

Yes, Mattingly has managed under lofty expectations in Los Angeles and has the experience that Mike Rizzo is looking for in his search, but the Nationals have put together a good list of candidates during their search so far. Plus, depending on how long this process goes, would the Nats be patient enough to wait how the situation ends up shaking out?

More from Nationals News

Even if Mattingly ends up getting fired, it seems like the more logical fit for him would be in South Beach as the next manager of the Miami Marlins. According to Heyman, “the Marlins have long had keen interest in Mattingly, and he may well be their No. 1 choice for their managerial opening.”

While I do think Mattingly doesn’t deserve all the blame in Los Angeles, the Nats need to be a little quick in their search than most teams because of the fact that the new manager will have to assemble a completely new staff. They have to do what’s best for them at this stage of the process instead of waiting around for another organization to make their decision. But, if Mattingly were to be fired, the Washington Nationals should look at some of the other candidates they have already interviewed or will interview to be their next manager.

Next: District Daily: Nats Expected To Interview Ron Wotus Monday

More from District on Deck