To say 2015 was a mess for the Washington Nationals is as big an understatement as saying Caddyshack 2 was not as good as the original. When the season began the only question for the Nats was, how many games could this team win.
There was never any doubt after adding Max Scherzer to the already formidable rotation, that the Nats were going to win the NL East. Of course, the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.
Somebody forgot to tell those Nats that no team was just going to quake in their cleats when they came to town, and the games had to actually be played. So thanks to injuries, poor play by the Nationals and a very good Mets team, not only did the Nationals not win the NL East, they didn’t even make the post season.
The last week of the season saw a mess that pretty much captured the entire season for this team as mid-season acquisition Johnathan Papelbon choked out the team’s biggest star Bryce Harper in the middle of the dugout for failing to run out a pop-up.
That pretty much marked the end of Matt Williams’ tenure as manager of the team.
So in typical disaster fashion, the Nats went on a search for a replacement and announced to the world that Bud Black would be that guy. Of course, since the World Series was going on, it wouldn’t be officially announced until after its conclusion. But a funny thing happened on the way to the end of the World Series, the Nats decided to lowball Black (to the tune of 1 year $1.6 million), and he turned them down.
So after already telling everyone Black was going to be their manager, they ended up hiring Dusty Baker. Now don’t get me wrong, Baker is a great choice to manage the team. He is the second winningest active manager (behind only Bruce Bochy), and has taken three different teams to division titles. But the way the whole situation was handled was just another PR mess that has to be cleaned up.
Let’s hope that 2016 is a little cleaner for the Nationals and that the only mess in Washington DC is what is going on in Congress and not on the baseball diamond.