Thehave stumbled out of the gate this season, causing some fans to call for manager Davey Martinez to lose his job. But on Thursday, veteran defended his skipper.
“Fans have the right to say whatever they want,” the Nationals first baseman told. “My only question would be what do you want him to do right now? He’s in a pretty tough spot right now. It’s always easy to blame the manager. It comes down to the players.”
The Nationals are currently 14-22 and sit fourth in the NL East, seven games back of the division-leading Philadelphia Phillies, who signed former Nationals superstarthis past winter.
Without Harper, the Nationals’ offense ranks ninth in the National League by. The lineup has also dealt with injuries, as , , and have all spent time on the injured list.
Meanwhile, the Nationals’ pitching rotation leads the Senior Circuit in, thanks partly to an offseason investment in , but its collective 4.19 ERA is middle of the pack.
The bullpen is where things have truly gone totally awry for the Nationals, as its collective 6.41 ERA ranks last in all of baseball.
Since moving to Washington prior to the 2005 season, the Nationals have employed nine different skippers. The longest-serving was Manny Acta, who managed 410 games before being replaced in the middle of the 2009 campaign.
Martinez replaced Dusty Baker, who helped lead the club to back-to-back first-place finishes before being relieved of duties after the 2017 season. In his second season since being hired away from the Chicago Cubs, Martinez owns a 96-102 record as Nationals manager.
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