Nationals fire manager after two seasons in charge

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 05, 2015 12:28 PM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Washington Nationals, a club loaded with big names that failed to live up to expectations despite a team-record $164 million payroll, fired manager Matt Williams on Monday.

Under-performing players, defensive lapses, and a roster laden with injuries to key players were chief reasons Washington finished with an 83-79 record this season and failed to make the postseason.

Williams, 49, won 96 games in 2014 in his first season as manager and was named National League Manager of the Year. The Nationals lost in the NL Division Series to the eventual World Series champion San Francisco Giants.

Seven of Williams' staff, including bench coach Randy Knorr, pitching coach Steve McCatty and hitting coach Rick Schu have been told their contracts will not be renewed, the team said.

(Reporting by Steve Ginsburg in Washington; Editing by Frank Pingue)