According to Mike Puma of The New York Post, Wally Backman may be moving on to the Washington Nationals to join Davey Johnson’s coaching staff in 2012.
Per Puma’s “source”, Johnson would groom Backman to be his heir apparent, and eventually take over as manager of the Nats.
If indeed there is truth to this rumor, it would explain why Sandy Alderson stepped around the question of where Backman would be in the Mets organization next year. When asked whether Backman would be back in Binghamton or in Buffalo, or as part of Terry Collin’s big-league staff, the GM was non-committal.
It would make perfect sense for Wally to move on from the Mets, considering that his ultimate goal is to be a Major League manager, he’s not getting any younger, and it does not appear as though he’ll have the opportunity to be a manager in Flushing anytime soon — since the Mets picked up Collins’ option to continue managing through 2013. Additionally, Backman is not seen as in the running for the coveted positions of bench coach nor third-base coach for Collins in 2012; generally speaking, those are the two roles often used as stepping stones toward managing.
What do you think? Should Wally move on to DC? Post your thoughts in the comments.