The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals are about to square off in a three-game weekend series, with Astros manager Dusty Baker returning to Washington for the first time since having been fired after the Nats were eliminated by the Chicago Cubs in the 2017 NLDS.
Baker was hired by the Nationals prior to the start of the 2016 season and managed two full seasons there.
He took over as the Astros manager after the dismissal of A.J. Hinch in 2020.
Baker has taken the Astros to at least the ALCS in each of his first two seasons.
Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle posted a tweet containing some comments from Baker reflecting on his time as manager of the Nationals.
A day before returning to Nationals Park, Dusty Baker reflected on his time in Washington as "probably some of the most enjoyable times I’ve ever had in baseball." He maintains a good relationship with GM Mike Rizzo, whom Baker reiterated didn't want to fire him after 2017
— Chandler Rome (@Chandler_Rome) May 12, 2022
Back To D.C.
It’s clear that Baker still holds the Nationals in high regard.
Despite only lasting two seasons, he still managed to take the Nationals to the postseason in both of those seasons.
Baker does maintain that he still has a good relationship with Nationals GM Mike Rizzo, who he says didn’t want to fire him in 2017.
It’s nice that he still holds Washington in high regard and looks back fondly at his time as the manager of the Nationals.
Baker is somebody who is revered by his players and has often been referred to as a “player’s manager.”
Players enjoy playing for him and want to win for him.
He’ll most likely be greeted with a warm welcome at Nationals Park as the fans show their appreciation for what he did for the team.