I have watched this man over the last two-plus years handle himself with so much class.
I don't think there is another manager in the game who could have endured as many gut wrenching, last-at-bat defeats.
Tuesday night in San Francisco was just another in a long line of pitchers failing to get the last three outs...Unbelievable.
If I were Manny, I might just take a boat to Alcatraz and see if I could swim back. I know with his strong mind and determination it would be a piece of cake for him; and at least it would surely burn off some of the frustration that has accumulated over the first six or so weeks of the season.
I managed for two seasons for the Cincinnati Reds, and I can tell you that losses take bits and pieces out of you.
I always felt that it took two wins to make up for the bitterness of one tough loss. Sleep is hard to come by when you lose; you often lose your appetite after feeling sick to your stomach; you feel bad for the players.
A manager, as time goes on, gets attached to the kids. He lives and dies with their successes and failures. They feel like family to him. There is nothing worse than having to make a decision that you know will affect a young man's life, possibly forever. There are wives and kids who are almost always hurt in the process. These players form strong bonds during the course of a season, their wives and kids do too. It's not just managing a baseball team that makes a great manager--it is, above all things, managing 25 different personalities. No one handles his players more fairly than Manny Acta! He has shown patience that Job would be proud of.
With this offense swinging the bat the way that they are, the Nats should be at least five games closer to the division lead. These guys are no fluke.They can flat out put some tallies on the board.
We are still not playing consistent, fundamental baseball - just too many silly concentration mistakes. It seems that every night there are two or three things that we fail to do that cost us runs and outs.
For instance in Tuesday's game, we failed to get a runner over on a bad sacrifice attempt. To worsen the problem, our baserunner at second ran when the ball went right back to the pitcher instead of holding his ground on a bad bunt. Our middle infielders were late getting to second on a first-inning Renteria steal; and our catcher did not block home plate on a critical run, choosing to set up to the first base side of home plate instead of squaring up with the third base line and letting the ball carry to him.
All these things are little things, but little things win games!
Hang in there Manny, I have a good feeling about this team, we all appreciate your hard work and fairness.