Years ago, the Phillies decided the antidote to Larry Bowa was a chuckling West Virginian. In came Charlie Manuel, who presided over a clubhouse of young stars in a city that needed so very, very few reasons to disregard him.
But eventually, everybody came around to the guy. Maybe it was his straight forward demeanor. Maybe it was his usage of self-generated baseball terms (like "hittin' season"). Maybe it was the World Series title and five straight division flags. Maybe it was his hat.
Whatever it was, Manuel wrote himself into Phillies lore for the rest of time, but like all beloved managers, eventually things went wrong enough for the team that they fired him. A weeping Ruben Amaro told us that Manuel was out in August 2013, and Manuel picked up his Wawa bag and left, before then coming back and taking a job as a senior adviser to the general manager, a position currently filled by a Phanatic bobblehead.
But just because he's a cherished figure and franchise icon doesn't mean he's not interested in, you know, abandoning his us to relay the innermost workings of the Phillies franchise to the Nationals.
Well, there's a plain-speaking guy who says he wants the [manager's] job: Charlie Manuel, the laid-back, drawling, storytelling sage who led the Phillies to five National League East division titles, two NL pennants and a victory in the World Series in 2008.
He probably would have the best resume in the pile.
"I'm not the kind of guy who will pick up the phone and look for a job, but I would definitely be interested in that job," Manuel told the Washington Times. "Washington has a good team and they have some good baseball people there."
There's been a lot of talk about the Nationals' blowing a good roster for the last time. It's not all Bryce Harper's over there, it's Bryce Harper and a stack of evaporating contracts.
But there's still plenty of talent in there, and Manuel could probably manage it well. Okay? Is that what you want to hear? And then the Nationals PR team can slap a hideous Sunday home game alternate uniform on him and have him read some copy that says they're the best team he's ever managed, by far. In regards to Washington's ongoing slander campaign that involves picking up former 2008 Phillies and trying to get them say bad things about their old team, Manuel would be the golden goose.