Davey Johnson has emerged as the clear frontrunner to become the Nationals' next manager, baseball sources told CBSSports.com Friday night.
The Nationals could announce a decision soon, and it's possible that Johnson could take over the team by the time the Nationals play the Angels in Anaheim on Monday night. John McLaren managed the Nationals Friday night in Chicago, but the Nationals made it clear that he would only run the team for a few days, until the next manager could be named.
Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo told reporters in Chicago that he had discussed the job with the 68-year-old Johnson, who hasn't managed in the major leagues since 2000, but has spent the last two seasons working in the Nationals front office.
"He would enjoy this challenge," Rizzo said, according to the Washington Post.
Later Friday, a source told CBSSports.com's Scott Miller that Johnson should now be considered the frontrunner.
Johnson managed in the major leagues for 14 years, winning the World Series with the 1986 Mets. He has an overall winning percentage of .564, with five division titles. The only active manager with a better career winning percentage is Joe Girardi, at .566.
Johnson also managed Team USA in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, when his work received less than stellar reviews.
The Nationals were forced into a move by Jim Riggleman's shock resignation on Thursday.