Junkies Prediction: Martinez has 3 weeks to save his job

Ben Krimmel
May 23, 2019 - 11:54 am

When a team you expect to be bad turns out to be bad, the person who put together the team usually gets most of the blame. That's how general managers get fired.

But when a team that is expected to be good turns out to be bad? Well, that's how managers get fired.

While some may have predicted the Washington Nationals would struggle to replace Bryce Harper, nobody expected them to totally fall apart in just 50 games. Most expected them to win the National League East and compete for a World Series title. 

And the pressure on manager Dave Martinez is palpable. 

"The reality is there is a fan base that is passionate about the Nationals when they're winning and they're frustrated because last year was a lost season and this year is slipping away," J.P. Flaim of The Sports Junkies said. "And so that window – we always talk about windows, who knows what the window is for the Nationals – the window may be closing."

The players and general manager Mike Rizzo are taking some of the heat, but the manager continues to be the face of the poor performance.

"Davey Martinez is butt uninspiring to me," Eric Bickel said. "He's a zilch, big zero to me. I'm just telling you I don't see signs that his firing is imminent."

However, that's not how Flaim sees it. "Let's say in... three weeks. June 10. If on June 10 they are 10 games below .500 or worse, I actually would bet on them whacking him."

Washington will play 16 games between today and the morning of June 10. In order to be better than 10 games under .500 that morning, the Nationals must go 9-7. 

Bickel is not convinced: "I see no signs of them firing him."

"Well, my signs are, they're just a bad team and they shouldn't be that bad," Flaim counters. 

So, once again, it will be another crucial stretch for the Nationals and their manager and might determine the direction of the franchise.

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