City Desk

Cheap Seats Daily: Sweeping Changes for Nats? Heath Shuler Conflicted? Divas Dominant?

Fox got the clock ticking for Manny Acta's firing with a report during the network's Saturday baseball coverage that he's ready to go, and the Washington Post put the Acta firing rumors on the front burner in Sunday's sports section. By last night the story had reached the point of no-return. Nobody's pulled any triggers yet.

But today's a day off for the team. He's gone.

Who's next? Fox says Montgomery County's own Jim Riggleman will be the interim guy. Why not bring Davey Johnson in?

Johnson was marvelous last time he managed in the MASN market. And he's already coached the Future of the Nats, Stephen Strasburg, during the Olympics.

Everybody likes Manny, but when your team's losing, you lose your job. This is D.C.! Ask the Republicans.


The 2009 Nats get swept more than a mess hall floor.

They blew a 4-0 lead in Tampa yesterday to complete yet another winless series. The game ended with Nick Johnson giving a half swing and walking toward the clubhouse before the ump even called him out.

Johnson's hailed as a warrior, and his comeback from a leg break that's too close to Joe Theismann's for comfort says he lives up to billing. But damn if he looked bothered by the latest loss.

Maybe they should fire the manager.


R2D2™ Update: Sure, we concocted the R2D2™ a few weeks ago just to kill digital column inches as part of our mission to save the titanic, um, platform of this newspaper and, surely, ALL NEWSPAPERS!

But the Tampa series really made me rethink the validity of this home-brewed baseball statistic. Check it: The Nationals have been outscored on the year by an MLB worst 83 runs. The Tampa Bay [unDeviled] Rays, meanwhile, have scored 68 more runs than their foes.

A. That gives the Nats a minus-151-run run-differential differential (R2D2™) with the Rays.

B. The Rays just swept the Nats.

C. With R2D2™, I'm onto something.

If nothing else, it's way easier to explain than Boswell's "Total Average!"


Back to how this town works: Heath Shuler might not have been able to pick up Norv Turner's offense, but he's learned the ways and means of politicking right fast. From a recent report in the Chattanooga Times Free Press:

The Tennessee Valley Authority created an appearance of favoritism in the way it granted valuable lakefront access last year to a real estate group that included U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler, D-N.C., according to a TVA audit released Monday.

TVA’s inspector general said agency officials bypassed a standard committee review and Rep. Shuler personally pursued the water access while sitting on a congressional committee with oversight of TVA.

“The appearance of preferential treatment was exacerbated by Shuler’s representatives dropping Shuler’s name with TVA employees,” TVA Inspector General Richard Moore said in a 58-page report.

Wait a cotton-pickin' minute here! There's still a place where dropping Shuler's name will get you favors? Wowee, is Washington out of touch or what?


There's at least one winner in P.G. County: The D.C. Divas beat the Philadelphia Firebirds 63-0 at the P.G. Sports and Learning Complex on Saturday to end their season 8-0. The ladies will kick off the IWFL playoffs in two weeks as the top seed.

Some hints of the Divas' top-seediness: They outpointed Philly 105-0 in the home-and-home series this year, on the way to outscoring the opposition 325-46 overall.

I hear the market's demand: Time to come up with a P2D2 stat!


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  • Angry Al Gonzales

    Acta will be fired - Lerners should go, too. Nats are AAA at best. Amanda Knox? What about her? Guilty or not guilty?

  • Everett W.

    The Maryland Maniacs indoor football team based in Upper Marlboro is running a ten game win streak so that's a second winner for Prince George's.