Ron Washington finished in second place in the San Diego Padres’ last managerial hunt. Jayce Tingler ended up getting the job and was fired after just two seasons at the helm. Washington may have another chance at getting the job, as general manager A.J. Preller is almost certainly going to be forced to at least look at managers with experience because his last two managerial hires were two guys who didn’t have big league managing experience and we all know how that worked out...not well.
Washington is currently in the midst of coaching for the Braves in the National League Division Series against the Milwaukee Brewers. Don Orsillo, the Padres TV play by play man, is calling the series for TBS and if all goes right, he could be calling a lot more of Washington’s games if the 69-year-old is able to land the Padres manager gig.
For the Washington fans out there, it’s a positive sign that Washington wants to manage the Friars and he thinks he’s the right guy to get Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado to the World Series.
“I think I’m qualified,” Washington told Robert Murray of FanSided. “I think I can get that team over the hump. That’s my thinking. I need that general manager to think like that. I’m definitely able to get them where they want to go.”
That is exactly what Padres fans should want to hear. A former American League champion manager gushing over the prospect of managing this ballclub. Washington even has support from players, such as Braves third baseman Austin Riley.
“I love working with Wash,” Riley told Murray recently. “I think he’d be an awesome manager. Some guys just have that ‘It’ factor and he definitely has it. He can relate to everybody. It doesn’t matter who it is. He’s one of those guys who’s been in the game for so long and has an answer for everything that comes his way. The knowledge he has is unreal.”
That description didn’t fit the last Padres manager. Tingler didn’t command the respect of everyone in the clubhouse. There were times where he didn’t have an answer for everything that came his way. It sure seems like Washington would instantly have the respect of the clubhouse and be prepared for every game situation that could come up.
Now, the ball is in Preller’s court. He has to admit that hiring one of ‘his guys’ wasn’t the right fit and still isn’t the right fit for this team moving forward. Once he can do that, odds are Washington (or another smart and experienced manager) will be able to convince Preller that he can lead the Padres to a World Series.