Matt Williams Fired as Nationals Manager; after 2 seasons

Matt Williams Fired as Nationals Manager, after 2 seasons

Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo announced today that field manager Matt Williams was relieved of his duties.

The Nationals later announced that the entire coaching staff was being let go of as well alongside Williams as the club looks to start completely anew.

The coaching staff consisted of bench coach Randy Knorr, pitching coach Steve McCatty, hitting coach Rick Schu, third base coach Bobby Henley, first base coach Tony Tarasco, bullpen coach Matt LeCroy and defensive coordinator Mark Weidemaier.

It is said that the new coaching staff will be made upon the fresh hands of whoever it is that winds up taking over in the managerial role. Once the transactions were made official, general manager Mike Rizzo had a chance to speak out via an immediate press release.

As part of the statement, Rizzo said, “A tough day for me personally and a tough day here at Nats Park. It was not our best year. It wasn’t Matt’s best year. It wasn’t my best year.”

Mike said he plans to have a “broader” pool of candidates this winter. “Experience is always helpful,” Rizzo said. He didn’t happen to rule out Knorr as a possibility.

According to Jon Morosi of FOX Sports, the Nationals are considering Hall of Famer Cal Ripken Jr. for their managerial job.

Jon Heyman of CBSSport.com mentioned in an article that former San Diego Padres manager Bud Black and former Cincinnati Reds manager Dusty Baker as possible candidates and good fits for Washington.

Other names that have been thrown out as good candidates for the job are Ron Gardenhire, Bo Porter and Larry Bowa.

Rizzo said he had talked with players prior to making any moves where he got input from them on Williams especially. Owners did have a say in the matter, however, when it finally became time to make the decision, it was ultimately on Rizzo.

As mentioned by MLBTradeRumors, Williams won National League Manager of the Year honors in 2014 despite persistent questions regarding his bullpen management, which were highlighted anyhow in last year’s playoffs. Williams ends his two-year tenure in Washington with a 179-145 record that simply wasn’t good enough to keep him around as there is much more to evaluating the manager then a simple check on the win/loss column.