The All Star break is officially upon us signaling the end of baseball's first half. It's a time to reflect on past success or build upon past failures.
This is a time to step back, take a deep breath, and clearly analyze where our teams have been, and where they are going.
So, on the day of the Home Run Derby, the Washington Nationals reflected on their first half of the 2009 baseball season, and decided it was time to make a change.
That change was the firing of manager Manny Acta.
It is a move, however, that begs two questions: 1. What took so long?, and 2. How much longer will Jerry Manual be managing the Mets?
For the past two-and-a-half-seasons, Manny Acta has been the on-field leader for the worst team in baseball. His teams have played at a .385 clip, with only 158 wins compared to 252 losses.
The Washington Nationals, on and off the field, have been the most poorly run franchise in recent baseball memory.
It's amazing that Acta has lasted this long. The rumors of his dismissal began about a month ago, but management let Acta finish out the first half in limbo.
Chances are, not even Casey Stengel could have managed the Nationals to a decent record.
Still, Acta was almost 100 games below .500. That's just terrible, yet for some reason, plenty of people love the guy.
Including the Mets.
It's been no secret that the Mets have lusted after Acta for years, even praising him at times, rather than their own manager.
Beginning in 2005, when Tony Bernazard (Mets VP of player development) openly campaigned for Acta to replace Art howe as Mets manager, before the job was given to Willie Randolph.
Acta would be placed on Randolph's coaching staff, but the franchise's brass would be divided as to who should have been manager.
Even after Acta would sign on to skipper the Nationals prior to the 2007 season, Mets brass and players would continue to praise Acta in the press, all the while undermining Randolph's authority with players and his position with the franchise.
Now, with Manny Acta available, the same may happen to Jerry Manuel.
If the Mets continue to underachieve, even with all the injuries, and miss the playoff for a third straight season, Manuel could find himself out of a job after the season.
Then Tony Bernanzard can finally get his man.