Thanks For Landing Strasburg; Now Go Get Bent

Pity the work of an interim. They usually step into their jobs in moments of extreme duress - like when an executive leaves amid poor performance and/or misbehavior, try their best to right the organization’s ship, and are then usually unceremoniously pushed aside when the organization figures out who they really wanted to replace the disgraced exec.

Mike Rizzo
(Then again, perhaps he lost points for looking like the unholy lovechild of Jim Cramer and Billy Joel and Barney Frank.)

Every now and then, though, the interim performs so admirably in his job, accomplishing things above and beyond the usual triage, that it’s only right and fair to just hand him or her the job and skip the rigamarole of the search. A good example? How about Mike Rizzo, acting GM of the Washington Nationals after Jim Bowden left in shame this February. No, the Nats haven’t been good, but they fleeced the Pirates on a trade or two. More importantly, Rizzo stared down Scott Boras and brought Stephen Strasburg into the fold before the signing deadline, something that seemed so unlikely that the MASN announcers were wailing in dismay at the prospect of Strasburg sitting out.

So the Nationals are going to go ahead and name a permanent GM, then. In true gracious fashion, it’s… not Rizzo.


So, what does Washington Nationals GM Mike Rizzo do for an encore after playing a key role in the signing of designated franchise savior Stephen Strasburg?

Would you believe lose his job?

Multiple sources insisted Tuesday that the Nationals are on the verge of announcing that Arizona Diamondbacks vice president Jerry DiPoto is about to be named Nationals GM, replacing Rizzo, who has been interim GM since replacing Jim Bowden earlier this season.

Ouch. We’re sure the Nats have some lovely parting gifts for Rizzo, like a dinette set and two custom “NATINALS” jerseys.

As the WASHINGTON POST notes, others in the front office are happy to have someone with DiPoto’s resume and … haha just kidding, their minds are blown by the buttholery on display:

If Dipoto obtains the job, it would shock many employees in Washington’s current front office, many of whom had assumed that Rizzo’s performance in recent weeks — especially with Strasburg — would all but guarantee him the job. [Nationals president Stan] Kasten, after the Strasburg negotiations were completed, joked with Rizzo that he had just dispensed the largest sum of money in amateur history. “That’s going to look great on your résumé,” Kasten said in jest.

Rizzo, who has dealt frequently with Scott Boras during his career, emerged from the Strasburg negotiations with the agent’s full respect. “Rizzo knows his [stuff],” Boras said. “He has a gut for” evaluating players.

Combine that with his restocking of the bullpen and his trade of underperformers Nick Johnson and Joe Beimel, and clearly, Rizzo needed to go.

Oh, well. The good thing is that he’ll likely find a job somewhere else in the majors in short order. As a Cubs fan, I’d like to see him step in for Jim Hendry. But then again, as a Cubs fan, I’m a reactionary, know-nothing meathead, so please disregard anything I have to say about anything.