Nats Need Acta

Team should keep their manager around

MannyActa enters this season knowing it could be his last in a Nats uniform.  Wait!  What?

The Nats have an option for 2010 that they have yet to pick up.  Wait!  What?

Manny guided a team that was projected to be historically bad to mere mediocrity.  His performance while playing luminaries like Mike Bacsik was regarded so highly by the team that they gave him a sizable bonus check.  (And we know the Lerner family won't throw around money for fun.)

So they loved him two seasons ago, but they don't want to give him the authority and peace of mind that would come with picking up his option?  What?

It doesn't make much sense.

Manny, to his credit, isn't negotiating in the press.  His comments display his typical even-keeled manner -- the one that helps him skilfully manage a clubhouse that contains a few malcontents and lots of struggling players.

Manny has some weaknesses, for sure, but he's never really had a full hand here.  The teams that Jim Bowden have handed him would've stunk underwater.

Acta's done well, mixing and matching, trying to wring every ounce of advantage he could out of these flawed players.

Poor Manny hasn't even had much authority over his coaching staff, which certainly hampered him last season.

Manny, a former Mets coach, has a strong relationship with their GM, Omar Minaya. If (when!) the Mets choke again, they'll be looking for a new manager. Minaya's likely to target Manny.  Uh-oh.

Acta's positive energy, his ability to juggle lineups while massaging egos, and the tone he sets all are strengths the Nats should reward.

Uncle Teddy needs to pick up Acta's option, and even extend him, giving Manny a chance to show what he can do once the fruits of "The Plan" ripen.

Chris Needham used to write Capitol Punishment before Blogger declined his option.

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