UPDATE #2 (11:30am ET): Nationals make the announcement official, putting Riggleman in the interim positing:
The Washington Nationals today relieved Manny Acta of his duties and named Jim Riggleman interim field manager. Nationals President Stan Kasten and Assistant General Manager and Vice President of Baseball Operations Mike Rizzo made the joint announcement.
Riggleman assumes the helm of the Nationals, his fourth big league managing job. He has compiled a 552-652 record while managing San Diego (1992-94), Chicago-NL (1995-99) and Seattle (2008). He posted a pair of winning records in five seasons with the Cubs, including a 90-73 (.552) record and a NL Wild Card in 1998.
Riggleman will draw off 29 professional seasons of experience as a manager or coach, 17 of which came at the big league level. Riggleman has served stewardships under Tony LaRussa, Jerry Manuel and Jim Tracy, among others.
A third baseman by trade, Riggleman played eight professional seasons after being drafted by the Dodgers in the 1974 First-Year Player Draft out of Frostburg State (MD) University. Riggleman grew up in nearby Rockville , MD and is a graduate of Richard Montgomery (MD) High School.
Actaβs tenure in Washington ends at the mid-point of his third season. He compiled a 158-252 record in those two-plus seasons with the Nationals, who enter the All-Star break in fifth place in the National League East at 26-61.
Acta was appointed as the second manager of the Washington Nationals on November 14, 2006. He earned his 100th career managerial victory with a 7-6 win on June 13, 2008 at Seattle.
UPDATE #1 (11:30am ET): Acta releases the following statement:
First, I would like to thank GOD for putting me in this position.Β I want to thank the Washington Nationals for giving me the opportunity to be a Major League manager. It was a great learning experience, I have no regrets.
As I move forward, I wish the Nationals all the best. I was very fortunate to work with and meet a lot of wonderful people while here.
Iβd like to extend a special thank you to the fans for being so patient and supportive over the last two and a half years.
Last but not least, to the media, thank you for being fair and respectful toward my family and I.
The Manny Acta tenure is over with the Washington Nationals. While the Nationals have not made an official announcement, Acta has told Enrique Rojas of ESPNdeportes.com of the firing.
"I thank the Nationals for giving me this opportunity and I'm sorry that things didn't work out as expected. It's normal for the manager to pay the price when the team is not doing well," Acta said.
The rumors of Acta being fired has been circulating for some time. Jim Riggleman has been seen as the leading candidate to replace Acta.
Acta posted a 158-252 record with the Nationals since coming on-board in November of 2006 after the Nationals let Frank Robinson go β the only other manager the Nationals have had.
The Nationals are a league worst 26-61 (.299) heading into the All-Star break. At their current pace, they would surpass the 1916 Philadelphia Athletics record of 117 losses on the all-time record, second only to the 1899 Cleveland Spiders at 134 losses.
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