Some of this, some of that

Like the Nationals, the Mariners are looking for a new manager this offseason. They were interested in having their new manager be their old manager, however.

FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal is reporting that the Mariners made a major effort to try and convince former manager Lou Piniella to return to the dugout and take the reins of that struggling franchise.

The 70-year-old Piniella declined, however.

With Davey Johnson stepping away from the Nationals' managerial job and Charlie Manuel and Dusty Baker having been fired, we're seeing a bunch of the elder statesmen in the managerial ranks out of jobs for the time being. More teams these days are turning towards younger managers who aren't too far removed from their playing days, and whether it's coincidence or not, a bunch of the older managers are now leaving the dugout.

It used to be that Jim Leyland was one of a handful of big league skippers in their upper 60s or early 70s. Now, Leyland, 68, is easily the oldest manager in the majors, and there's been talk in the past about him stepping away from the position sometime soon.

There seem to be more outside responsibilities that come with the managerial job now, be it media obligations or duties within the organization. I wonder whether that is leading to some in the older crop of managers wanting to stay out of the dugout once they've already left.

Just something interesting to note as the Nats look for a manager of their own this offseason.

The Nats don't seem to be in any kind of hurry when it comes to their managerial search, by the way, instead waiting to get the first round of interviews under way.

We'll see things ramp up a bit in the coming days and weeks, but unlike some teams, the Nats don't feel they need to act quickly when it comes to filling their manager opening. They know they have an attractive position, they likely know the candidates they intend to interview and they're waiting to get that process started.

Speaking of Leyland, his Tigers punched their ticket for the American League Championship Series last night, rounding out the final four teams remaining in the World Series hunt.

The Tigers will face the Red Sox, who finished with the best record in baseball, while the Dodgers and Cardinals will square off in the NLCS.

Both of the so-called Cinderellas of baseball's postseason were knocked out the last two days, with the Pirates and Athletics dropping decisive fifth games. Last night, the Tigers bounced the A's with a big assist from Justin Verlander, who has started to pitch like Justin Verlander again recently.

Personally, I would have been happy to see the Pirates and A's move on to the league championship series round, as I enjoy having new blood in the mix. The four teams that remain deserve to be there, but I like seeing different fan bases getting a chance to experience the thrill of late-October baseball, and it would've been fun to see PNC Park in Pittsburgh rocking a little bit longer.

As I was watching the decisive games each of the last two nights, pulling for Pittsburgh and Oakland, I was wondering whether you all had any specific rooting interests as the postseason gets deeper. I would imagine that many Nats fans would prefer the Cardinals fall apart, as the idea of seeing Pete Kozma, Adam Wainwright and other Cards celebrate might still be a little painful, even with it being a year after they knocked the Nats from the postseason.

Is that the case? Do you find yourself actively rooting against the Cardinals in this postseason? Do you have a team you're especially pulling for?

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