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Washington Nationals name Dusty Baker manager

The Washington Nationals have reportedly hired Dusty Baker as their new manager

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

The Washington Nationals have hired Dusty Baker as their new manager, according to multiple reports.

The Nationals, who fired Matt Williams after a disappointing 2015 campaign that reached its nadir when Jonathan Papelbon was allowed to pitch after cameras caught him choking Bryce Harper in the dugout, had apparently narrowed their list down to Bud Black and Dusty Baker last week, and were reportedly in negotiations with Black before opting for Baker instead.

Both Black and Baker have extensive managerial experience, in contrast to Williams, who was a first time manager who had difficulty handling the clubhouse.  While Baker is criticized for strategic and lineup decisions that are viewed as outdated, he has a solid reputation for being able to manage a clubhouse and command the respect of his players.  With a veteran team in win-now mode coming off a manager that the players seemed to think was in over his head, Baker seems like a natural fit for Washington.