According to Chico Harlan and Mike Viera of the Washington Post, Nationals team president Stan Kasten "gave his firmest-yet support" of Manny Acta during a speaking engagement Wednesday afternoon, expressing hope that he can "serve as long-term manager" for the club.
"In Manny's case, I happen to be a big fan of his," Kasten said. "I think he has the demeanor to be a long-term solution as a manager. He has the demeanor of a Bobby Cox and others who have been successful. I had this great talk around the batting cage last night with Terry Francona, the young, possibly genius manager of the Boston Red Sox. And I said, 'Terry, I remember when you were a dummy as manager of the Phillies.' And he says, 'Stan, I promise you, I'm still a dummy, I just have better players.' It's so true. And I have always from the beginning supported Manny. I can't predict whether it will work here, but I think he will. I think he's going to serve as a long-term manager here. That's my hope."
As some of you may remember, FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal heard from a source two weeks ago that the Nats would cut ties with Acta on June 15. SI.com's Jon Heyman confirmed the report hours later, but that date passed without a whimper and Acta still remains the skipper in Washington. The Nats are 20-49 this season, 17 games back in the National League East.