WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 03: Manager Davey Johnson #5 of the Washington Nationals heads to the mound to remove starting pitcher Jason Marquis #21 (not pictured) during the second inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Nationals Park on July 3, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Davey Johnson Named Washington Nationals' Manager For 2012

The worst-kept secret in D.C. is out. The Washington Nationals announced that Davey Johnson will be the team's manager in 2012.

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Davey Johnson Will Be Named Washington Nationals Manager, According To Report

The Washington Nationals will name Davey Johnson as manager for the 2012 season, reports William Ladson, citing "a baseball source." The MLB.com scribe says the Nationals will announce the hire upon the conclusion of the World Series, which could take place as soon as Thursday.

Johnson served as Washington's interim manager after Jim Riggleman abruptly resigned in June, guiding the team to a 40-43 finish to the season. Though he's managed at the Major League level for 15 seasons, he had not managed a team since the 2000 Los Angeles Dodgers prior to filling in for Riggleman. His career record stands at 1188-931 and includes a World Series championship with the 1986 New York Mets.

Last Thursday, Rizzo told Mark Zuckerman that he had interviewed other candidates for the club's managerial position, though no word of precisely who else the Nationals considered has yet surfaced. However, it's long been suspected that Washington would invite Johnson to return.

Please visit Federal Baseball for more Nationals coverage.

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Mike Rizzo Says Davey Johnson Will Manage Washington Nationals Through 2012

The Washington Nationals 2011 season can't exactly be called a huge success, but the young club did give fans ample reason to be hopeful about the direction the club is heading in for 2012 and beyond. The Nationals finished the season 80-81, an 11.5 improvement from their 2010 record of 69-93.

When Jim Riggleman surprised the baseball world by stepping down just shy of the halfway mark of the season with the Nats sporting a winning record (38-37), Davey Johnson was hired three games later to manage the club for the remainder of the season. That couldn't have been too easy of an environment to walk into, but Johnson kept the ship afloat as Washington played close to .500 baseball under his direction (40-43).  According to Mike Rizzo, Washington's general manager, Johnson more than earned the opportunity to remain as manager of the club in 2012:

"We feel pretty confident that Davey's in place," Rizzo said. "He's going to be here for years to come. He's a terrific manager. I can see him managing this team through 2012. We haven't made any announcements yet, because we haven't done our full due diligence, but those announcements will come probably soon after the World Series."

We'll see if there is actually any more 'due diligence' to do, or if Rizzo and the Nationals are appropriately waiting until after the World Series to conclude before making any formal announcement, but all signs point towards the 68-year old returning for at least one more year of duty for the improving Nationals organization.  

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