Washington Nationals don't renew Dusty Baker's contract, begin search for new manager

Ross Houston
October 20, 2017

The Washington Nationals announced Friday Dusty Baker will not return as manager of the club in 2018.

"I'm surprised and disappointed", Baker told USA Today.

Baker was taken aback by the decision, telling USA TODAY Sports he was particularly stunned it took the club 10 days to get back to him with a decision.

"I'm doing great; it was just a little thing, a bit of a cleanup to have a better swing", Ramirez told ESPN's Marly Rivera.

Your energy until the very end of this year's National League Division Series filled us with pride as we reflected on how far our team and our fanbase have come. It's a timeline that frustrated Baker.

For the sixth time in a decade, the Washington Nationals need a new manager. Last week, the Nats fell to the Chicago Cubs in Game 5 of their NL Division Series.

On Friday, Rizzo made it clear that Washington's latest early playoff exit played a role in decision to party ways with Baker.

Thirteen seasons ago, when baseball returned to D.C., we envisioned passionate fans at Nationals Park every night cheering on the hometown team. "In 2009, we were hoping to improve our record from 2008". And now, our expectations have gone to the fact that winning a lot of regular season games and winning divisions are not enough. "Our goal is to win a world championship".

Rizzo said he and the ownership group made the decision Thursday night - "one of the most hard decisions that the ownership group and myself have had to make" - and Baker was informed Friday morning.

The contracts for the members of Baker's coaching staff also are finished. The team has also met with Astros bench coach Alex Cora, but he is reportedly expected to be hired by the Red Sox. He is one of the true gentlemen in our sport, and we thank him for the successes that we enjoyed together over the last two years. We won at least 95 games each year and won the division back to back years but they said they wanted to go a different direction.

The Nationals will get another shot at an October run next season, but it won't be with Dusty Baker.

Other reports by iNewsToday