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Report: Nats ask for permission to interview Mattingly

The Nationals have asked the Los Angeles Dodgers for permission to interview hitting coach Don Mattingly for their vacant managing job, Mattingly told AOL Fanhouse on Tuesday.

According to the report, Mattingly said the Nationals "are on a different timetable" than the Indians -- who have already interviewed Mattingly by phone for their open position -- and will wait until after the World Series to begin the interview process in earnest.

Mattingly is widely considered to be Joe Torre's heir to the Dodgers' managing job, but told AOL Fanhouse he wouldn't pass up another opportunity. "When opportunity knocks," he said, "you've got to break down the door."

By Dave Sheinin  |  October 21, 2009; 9:52 AM ET
Categories:  Jim Riggleman  
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Next: Valentine, Melvin among candidates for Nats job

Comments

Tom Boswell's favorite.

Posted by: petercapitolhill | October 21, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Yawn. Thanks a bunch for giving us the day-old news, Dave. WIll this be recycled in tomorrow's paper as well? Maybe you can do some of your own original reporting on the managerial search? That's probably too much to expect.

Also, Mattingly did not "tell AOL Fanhouse." He talked about this with all the reporters in Philadelphia who were enterprising enough to seek him out and discuss this with him. Apparently that does not include you, though it does include Ben Goessling at your competitor paper, who has the same quotes as the Fanhouse story, along with much more. Here's his story for anyone who wants to read actual reporting on the topic, including reporting on other potential candidates: http://tinyurl.com/yh9ojf3

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 21, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

On Mattingly, below are some of his recent comments about the (in his view) sub-standard, not tough enough, LA baseball media. Don will certainly be disappointed by DC if he thinks that the "tough East Coast media" extends this far south:

"A couple of weeks ago, Dodgers hitting coach Don Mattingly told a San Diego radio station the media on the East Coast are so much tougher than those out West.

"If a guy makes a mistake, they make a big deal out of it," he says. 'They don't let them off the hook like you do on the West Coast.'"

***

"The players on the East Coast are forced to play better, Mattingly says, knowing they will be held accountable by the media.

"Mattingly, the leading candidate to replace Joe Torre as manager a year from now, says the Dodgers laugh at how much slips by the L.A. media."

http://tinyurl.com/yladrtj

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 21, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Maybe we could hire Jim Zorn instead after all there basically the same guy. Borderline hall of famer,working with a veteran coach and don't have an ounce of experience doing the job. If this fails maybe we could give another unqualified candidate who knows the Torre way a shot. After all Lee Mazzilli is looking for work after his glorious tenure with the Orioles. If Mattingly wants to be a manager hire him for Syracuse not Washington.

Posted by: wellscats | October 21, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Not only new posted, but a report that says about the same thing that I did. I think I'm last on the previous.

@506 please check previous for my congrats.

Posted by: Catcher50 | October 21, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Where do I send in my application to get one of these jobs at the Post where you get paid to go to the games and then recycle days-old web copy and occasionally write an original paragraph (but only about the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers or Phillies) for the print edition and/or washingtonpost.com? I'll "work" for half what they're paying Sheinin. Hell, I'll do it for free if the Post picks up the travel and meal expenses.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I guess Dave reads AOL Fanhouse for Nats news, but not the Wash Times. Might have to reconsider that. Thanks for the link CiL.

Posted by: Section222 | October 21, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

uuuuuuuuuummm... zorn isn't even vaguely a borderline hall of famer as a player. i doubt he was ever seriously discussed in those meetings, other than as "the guy who threw the ball to largent a lot."

Posted by: sec231 | October 21, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

waitaminute. Did I stumble on Redskins Insider by mistake? Oh. Never mind.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Sorry to be so late on this, but wanted to add my congratulations to 506, and my best wishes that your marriage will shatter records for VORM. (Value Over Replacement Marriage. Yes, I went there. That's how I roll.)

Posted by: Section220 | October 21, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

The Man With The Golden Glove was featured prominently in my room from 1986-1998. DONNIE BASEBALL! Come On Nationals! Do it!

Posted by: mjwies11 | October 21, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Oh, no. Not another rookie manager. No, no, a thousand times no. Besides, Mattingly is first in line when Torre hangs it up after next season. This franchise does not need any more on-the-job training. Give Riggs the job, permanently.

Posted by: Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me | October 21, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

I agree that Don Mattingly is no more a sure thing as a manager than Manny Acta was. I remember how excited we were when Acta was hired. I have to admit that I don't want Riggleman to get the job, wanting to see signs of change away from the Bowden era. That isn't necessarily a basis for the best choices.

I think that I would most happily see news that the Nationals have boosted their scouting crew further, and that they are specifically going to honestly have someone scouting Asia.

Since I look at many sources for Nats news, mainly through SportSpyder, I don't worry so much about when the Post reports on something. CIL has certainly made these points over several years, to no effect. Fan interest will drive coverage in this case, not the other way around (whether this should be the case or not). The burden, then, falls on the Lerners again. Build a successful franchise, and a broader fan base will join CIL in demanding more coverage. Then we will get it.

+1/2St.

Posted by: kevincostello | October 21, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

LOL, 220!

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

"This franchise does not need any more on-the-job training. Give Riggs the job, permanently."

I read somewhere a while ago that out of all managers who have ever managed 10 or more seasons, Jim Riggleman's record is the worst. That's mediocrity with a capital M. To put it in Redskins terms, Jim Riggleman is Norv Turner, but Don Mattingly is no Jim Zorn. Give me Mattingly over Riggleman any day.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Phil Wood's take on Riggleman vs. Mattingly:

http://masnsports.com/2009/10/nats-interested-in-donnie-base.html

Posted by: BobLHead | October 21, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

ex-Nats (Livo and the Saint) in the news, from a Miami Herald blog.

http://tinyurl.com/yzff2ne

http://tinyurl.com/ylytqy9

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

i see in the ny post that he's scheduled to interview with the indians.

Posted by: ronaldtennillegeorgia1 | October 21, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Hire Cal Ripkin Jr.

Posted by: swang30 | October 21, 2009 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Sigh, I can't even snark right. That would be Ripken.

Posted by: swang30 | October 21, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Cal Ripken wants to manage. He's too fat and happy where he is now, on TV and owning a minor league team. Maybe they could get Billy Ripken, though.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Riggleman may be an experienced hand, but Mssrs Wood and Pryor speak volumes about his management of young arms. After such a massive investment in Strasburg and the injuries already to JZimmerman, that just strikes me as unwise unless they can somehow have a bench/pitching coach with a firm hand on innings. Which is, shall we say... unlikely.

Mattingly? Seriously? Not only do I think the Zorn comparisons are apt, but it's not like the Dodgers led the league in OPS or something (they were 11th, the Nationals were 18th), and look like they were one of the luckiest this season (team BABIP is third-highest). So I can't even say something like, "We'll, they'll produce better" with a straight face.

Mattingly is a name, not an experienced hand who can reassure the vets we're going someplace and help build the younger players up (which, like it or not, is going to be something that has to happen). Getting a "name" is a JimBo approach, and Rizzo should know better. Let the Tribe have him.

FWIW - I like the idea of Bob Melvin.

Posted by: neato_torpedo | October 21, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Riggleman is no prize. There is a reason neither the Astros or Indians are interested in him. We need fresh blood, and I for one would be happy with Donnie Baseball. The Dodgers O is pretty impressive. I would rather have a first-time manager than a worn-out retread (read: Riggleman). There doesn't seem to be an abundance of great managers out there, so to ignore up-and-comings would be a disservice to the organization.

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

The Dodgers' O is 1st in AVG & OBP and I believe 4th in Runs.

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

CiL your spot on in your critique regarding Shine-Boy and the rest of the WAPO gang, no reason not to continue to say what needs to be said. However kudos to BenG over at the WATIMES its refreshing to have someone on the ball.
BTW Holden Kushner is doing the nite-gig over on the former JFK, folks the guy is a baseball sell-out, there I said it and I'm feeling better. Also, anyone else tired of hearing the local sports talkies refer to themselves as Sports Talkers, why don't they just cut to the chase and say it this way, we talk Football and nothing else.

Since the Philly-Dodger series is going to end tonight maybe the WAPO will fly Shiner or Chico out to the AFL to catch the 1230 SS start against the Jalepenos on Thurs.
Whats that you say Tracee, no can do? Why? You guys need another 10 writers to hang out over at Ashburn for what? Another BINGO call.

On Mattingly, I'm with everyone else, time for a varsity manager. OJT is for Syracuse unless DM can prove that has been infused with Torre blood. I would take a pass on a Yankee who never played in a post-season game. Bobby V, we need you!

Posted by: TippyCanoe | October 21, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I'd fly out for bat night if they did!

-----

Maybe they could get Billy Ripken, though.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Other famous first time manager/coaches:

- Manny Acta
- Jim Zorn
- Ed Tapscott
- George Armstrong Custer
- Herbert Hoover
- Ted Williams

Posted by: natbiscuits | October 21, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

> I'd fly out for bat night if they did!

I don't think the Nationals have had a bat night since they got here in 2005. I remember Senators bat nights in the 1960s, but I think they were for kids only.

Although come to think of it there might have been a few bat nights in RFK over the years. But they would have been the creepy hang-from-the-roof bats, not baseball bats.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Some first time coaches you forgot:

Mike Scossia (sp)
Mike Tomlin
Joe Girardi
Bruce Boudreau

These lists can go both ways.

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Only if the bats were replicas of Billy's infamous "FF" model....

***

I'd fly out for bat night if they did!

-----

Maybe they could get Billy Ripken, though.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 12:47 PM

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 21, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Re: Canoe's reference to Mattingly having never played a post-season game...


1995 ALDS 5G 25PA 3R 10H 4-2b 1HR 6RBI 1BB BA-.417 SLG-.708 OPS-1.148

Posted by: hats4bats | October 21, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Hats;

Thanks for correcting me, I realized what I wrote after I posted, should have said WS vice playoffs. Truth is he played on some bad Yankee teams during his career, it wasn't until the arrival of Jeter, Williams, Posada, Pettite, Rivera that thinks turned around for the Yankees and by that time DM was finished.BTW wasn't the 95 ALDS against the Mariners?

Posted by: TippyCanoe | October 21, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

BTW, no one said the Indians/Astros are not interested in Riggleman. He is currently under contract with the Nationals. The Nationals would have to grant permission to talk to him. Of the names floated out there for Nationals Manager so far, the only one that mildly interests me is Larry Bowa - not because he would be a great manager, but because he would be an amusing side show. I mean if we are not going to contend, lets at least throw some bases and threaten to kick the players asses. You wouldn't have to wait for Friday night - every night is fireworks night with Larry Bowa managing. Maybe his nephew would come back too.

Post game interview: "So Larry tell us how it feels to have come so close, but lost it after that bases loaded walk?"

"Well, Debbie it @#$%^&*! sucks! If these idiots can't throw strikes, we'll find someone who can. That umpire couldn't find the strike zone with if it was painted on his ass. I'll tell you one thing, the next time guy in the other dugout digs in on our pitchers, we're going to knock him on his butt. That's the one thing we're good at, throwing balls outside the strike zone ..."

Posted by: natbiscuits | October 21, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Mattingly is more deserving than Acta was all things being equal "Donnie Baseball" has more of an upside and consider the fact that Bowden didn't want an experinced type i.e.(F Robby)when he hired Manny.Frank had forgotten more about the game than Jimbo ever knew or thought he knew, if i'm Rizzo i'd be taking a long look at Mattingly along with my favorite Tim Foli.

Posted by: dargregmag | October 21, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

"BTW, no one said the Indians/Astros are not interested in Riggleman. He is currently under contract with the Nationals. The Nationals would have to grant permission to talk to him."

Right. So if the Indians, Astros or any other team WAS interested in Riggleman, they'd be asking for permission to talk with him. They're not, which would indicate that they're not interested in him. Manny Acta, Don Mattingly - THOSE are the possible managers teams are interested in right now.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

"consider the fact that Bowden didn't want an experinced type i.e.(F Robby)when he hired Manny"

Not true. Bowden would've hired an experienced type instead of Manny, but Lou Piniella, Joe Girardi and who knows who else turned down the job. It was not that they didn't want an experienced type, what they didn't want was Frank Robinson.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

When opportunity knocks, it is presumably on YOUR door, Donnie Baseball, so don't break it down; open it.

Posted by: tailwagger | October 21, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm not qualified to determine whether Mattingly would be a good fit in DC.

However, I do think it's worth asking whether or not the Nats are doing themselves a disservice by not starting their search "in earnest" until after the WS.

If you want the right manager for this team, and you don't want to settle for anything less than the perfect fit, why risk losing your ideal candidate to another team that started interviews sooner?

Am I missing something? Is there someone working for NYY, LAA, LAD, or PHI that they're waiting for?

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

No kidding. Girl Scouts beware.

-----

When opportunity knocks, it is presumably on YOUR door, Donnie Baseball, so don't break it down; open it.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"Am I missing something? Is there someone working for NYY, LAA, LAD, or PHI that they're waiting for?"

Yes. His name is Don Mattingly, currently the Dodgers hitting coach. Look for him to be formally interviewed as soon as the Dodgers are eliminated.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I never would have thought the Post could find someone more clueless than Emilio Garcia-Ruiz to be their sports editor, but by God they're trying.

"Chicken or the Egg: Which comes first?

I wish that the Post's Sports section did a more balanced job of covering all four of the regions pro sports teams.

I've seen various Post editors and writers defend their choices to cover the Redskins ad nauseam, occasionally at the expense of the other pro teams. And the Post defends its choices by using web traffic and statistics to point out that readers to go the Redskins info.

Sure they do, I'm not likely to come to washingtonpost.com for Nats news, because most days, you guys don't have any. So, which will come first, the chicken or the egg?

Matt Vita: Thanks for your comment. While the Redskins do indeed receive a considerable amount of coverage, we provide terrific coverage of all the sports teams in D.C., including the Nationals."

And people think Stan Kasten is condescending...

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 21, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Some first time coaches you forgot:

Mike Scossia (sp)
Mike Tomlin
Joe Girardi
Bruce Boudreau

These lists can go both ways.

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 1:04 PM
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Good points and good list. I put my vote behind Jim Riggleman. I think he did a real good job with what he had and had a few nice streaks including the winning streak at the end of the season. The players respect him and if he can assure us he can move Guzy to 2nd base in a way that Frank Robinson got Alfonso Soriano to move to LF then Jim Riggleman is definitely my guy.

Heck the Orioles nearly lost 100 games and Angelos re-signed Trembley to another contract so go figure that a guy who the last 2 years lost 93 then 98 games would be so revered in Baltimore.

Give Jim Riggleman and Rizzo a chance to add to the starting pitching and bullpen and don't make Adam Dunn into a 2010 lame duck soon-to-be Free Agent and this team should improve by 15 wins this year. Still not a playoff team, but on its way back to respectibility!

Posted by: GoingGoingGone | October 21, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

What about Cecil Cooper? He's looking for a job I hear.

Posted by: twinbrook | October 21, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I hear Manny Acta is looking for work, he has experience managing in this market and from what I hear he is a promising candidate

Posted by: sect104 | October 21, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

I don't know about the rest of you, but when I think of rookie managers, the first name that pops to mind is Bucky Harris. In his first year as manager, he managed...The Washington Nationals. He managed the team to a World Series win. I don't have any problem with rookie managers.

As far as Mattingly goes, I have the same doubts that I have about any superstar as manager. Usually, they don't do well because they have trouble understanding why the 25 players on the roster don't have the same talent and drive as they did. Yes, Ted Williams was an exception (for 1 year) as was Pete Rose (but Rose's intensity and drive well outstripped his talent) and I think Cal Jr. would be a good manager, because of the way he played the game between his ears. Personally, I'm guessing that he has made so much money in his other ventures that he would be much more likely to buy the O's than manage them.

BTW, Mattingly is an interesting "superstar". He was a very good ballplayer and, sort of, did achieve superstar status, but, I wonder if he had had the same stats and played in Minnesota, Milwaukee, or Oakland, he would be viewed in the same way.

Posted by: Catcher50 | October 21, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Catcher50, there's no question that Mattingly was a great player and a clear superstar for several years. In fact, the NY Times conducted a poll of *players* league-wide in 1986, and Mattingly was voted the best player in baseball, by his peers. You should look at Mattingly's stats from '84-'87. The only thing that kept him from 3,000 hits and the Hall of Fame was his chronically bad back. Even so, he had a great career. And never more than 43 Ks in a season for a power hitter? Who does that?

Also, funny that you should mention Minnesota. Take a look at Mattingly's stats compared to Puckett's. Many people would argue that Mattingly had the better career, even with the bad back. Yet Kirby ended up in the HOF.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 21, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

God, I'm slow today. Stupid cold.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

What I meant to ask was if there were no other candidates from eliminated teams they are considering as well.

Does it make sense to wait until the WS is over and run the risk that another individual you are considering is locked up by other team?

-----

"Am I missing something? Is there someone working for NYY, LAA, LAD, or PHI that they're waiting for?"

Yes. His name is Don Mattingly, currently the Dodgers hitting coach. Look for him to be formally interviewed as soon as the Dodgers are eliminated.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of managerial candidates, Chico ahs a post up. (Hope you feel better soon, JiM.)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

*has* a new post. (And I don't even have a cold.)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

As for Cal, I don't think he'll manage. He truly enjoys doing all his work with kids around the east coast. I think he'd like to own or be a GM someday though. He's Baltimore area born and bred. I doubt he would do anything down here! Besides, Ryan isn't off to college yet and he's vowed to see his kids off to college.

Donnie Baseball wouldn't be bad. Bob Melvin could be good too. Former Catcher! What about Clint Hurdle? He managed the Rockies? Is he being mentioned anywhere?

Oh and I don't know you 506 but congratulations on your Marriage!!

Posted by: CALSGR8 | October 22, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

I think Mattingly is by far the best candidate for the job. While Riggelman has been good, he is completely mediocre. Don't confuse "experience" with "managerial ability." The numbers don't lie, the man has a career record of 522-654. In defense of hiring Mattingly, I ask you to look at the success of another first-time manager from the Joe Torre coaching tree: Joe Girardi. Girardi was only 41 when he was hired by the Marlins, and he was named Manager of the Year that season. I'm not saying that Mattingly will have the same results as Girardi, but given the intensity and passion with which "Donnie Baseball" played the game, I can imagine that he will try and infuse the same dedication into his Nats players. A player cannot become great simply based on talent alone, it also requires great preparation and discipline, which Mattingly will definitely stress. Don't just sleep on him because he's a rookie, he's obviously no slouch if Torre has already given Mattingly his blessing to succeed him as Dodgers manager in 2010.

Posted by: GBroder17 | October 25, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

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