Uncertanty Surrounds the Nat’s As The Offseason Begins

It was hard to believe what I saw when it happened. The Nat’s were down one run in the bottom of the 9th with two outs and Bryce Harper was up to bat. We all knew what the story should have been, Harper ties up the game with one swing and the Nat’s would win in the bottom of the 9th or maybe in extras.

We all know what happened next…..

So now what?

Once again DC fans are excluded from the final four that they have dreamed about for ANY of their sports teams for more than two decades (sorry DC United)  and there are more questions than answers surrounding the team.

Dusty Baker

It’s really hard to find a manager that is able to take a team and win 90+ games in multiple seasons, but Baker did. Not only did he win 95 games in his first season with the Nat’s, but he also managed to win 97 this year after being faced with multiple injuries including former NL MVP Bryce Harper. Baker has back-to-back NL East Division titles under his belt, and the team adores him.

“I think Dusty’s obviously great,” first baseman Ryan Zimmerman said. “The whole coaching staff. Those guys worked their butt off to get us ready. They do such a good job of making sure that they relate to us.”

Baker has said he wants his 23rd year managing to be in DC, but the front office stalled negotiations with the 14th winningest manager in MLB history until the season ended. Baker would be the oldest manager in the league (unless former Mets manager Terry Collins finds a new home) at 69 years old and he still receives criticism from pundits that he is too “old school” and ignores the sabermetric culture (see Moneyball) that has led teams like the Cubs to postseason success.

Jayson Werth

Werth is a fan favorite to be sure, but the 38-year-old LF just finished his 7-year, 126MM contract and there are questions surrounding his return. Although he has mentioned he would like to come back to the nations capital, he has only played in 90+ games once in the last three seasons (2016). That’s what happens when you’re in your 15th season. He shows up in the clutch, especially in big games, but batting .266/ .322/ .393 with 10 HR and 29 RBI may not be enough.


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