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It’s official: Matt Williams is the Nationals’ new manager

Oct 31, 2013, 11:19 AM EDT

Matt Williams AP

Matt Williams has officially been hired to replace Davey Johnson as Nationals manager, with a press conference scheduled tomorrow.

In announcing the move general manager Mike Rizzo said: “He’s been someone on my radar as a potential manager for years.”

Williams has been serving as Arizona’s third base coach under manager Kirk Gibson, but was the Diamondbacks’ third baseman way back when Rizzo was their scouting director.

No word yet on if Johnson’s bench coach, Randy Knorr, will stick around in the same job with Williams after interviewing for the manager gig himself. Williams, who played 17 seasons in the majors and made six All-Star teams before going into coaching, is 47 years old.

UPDATE: Knorr is returning, so the Nationals get their top outside candidate and keep their favorite in-house guy too.

  1. dan1111 - Oct 31, 2013 at 11:33 AM

    Wow, Matt Williams was a really good player, and I have never heard of him (Incidentally, he has more WAR than David Ortiz).

    • lasam27 - Oct 31, 2013 at 11:45 AM

      He did more roids than Ortiz as well

      • ryanrockzzz - Oct 31, 2013 at 11:48 AM


      • paperlions - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:02 PM

        We (the public) don’t know how many PEDs either man did. What we do have is more evidence that Williams used PEDs than we have evidence that Ortiz used PEDs.

        Of course, until a year or so ago, we (the public) had more evidence that Williams used PEDs than we had for Lance Armstrong, but we now know his body was a chemistry lab for pretty much his entire career. The point simply being that public knowledge changes.

      • NatsLady - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:31 PM

        Actually, Williams, according to the Nats, “owned up” to PED use. How much/how often/how long was not specified in the report, but Rizzo “didn’t agonize” over it.

      • NatsLady - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:45 PM

        Rizzo (radio interview today) on Williams and the Mitchell report/PEDs:

        “Matt was candid, he was accountable for it, he doesn’t take it lightly, we don’t take it lightly. He wants to be judged on his coaching and managerial career going forward…”

    • lphboston - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:58 PM

      Guess this opens the door for Ort*z to be a manager someday

    • asimonetti88 - Oct 31, 2013 at 3:34 PM

      What? You’ve never heard of Matt Williams? Did you just start watching baseball recently?…

  2. someguyinva - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:15 PM


  3. NatsLady - Oct 31, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    I’ll repeat what I said a while back: As players from that era become broadcasters/analysts, it’s more and more clear that PEDs were common and widespread. They refer to it almost off-hand as “what was going on.” Everyone knew–which is not to say everyone partook. Probably all teams had at least a substantial minority who used. It wasn’t looked on as much worse than dipping, a practice which also has its benefits and dangers, and which has been banned in the minor leagues.

    • skids003 - Oct 31, 2013 at 4:25 PM

      As a Braves fan, I hate to see your Nats pick him up. He’ll be good for the Nats.

      • NatsLady - Oct 31, 2013 at 4:47 PM

        Thanks. I hope so. Looking forward to some good battles in 2014–hope we win more of them this time!

  4. rje49 - Oct 31, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    The thing I remember most about Williams was his strike-shortened 1994 season. He was well on his way to a 60+ homer year when the strike ended the season.

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