As they say, stuff rolls downhill.
The Nationals are the worst organization in the majors because of dyfunctional management starting with Mark Lerner, Stan Kasten, and Jim Bowden. But when things get ugly, it's the middle relievers, bench coaches, and now Randy St. Claire who take the fall.
Remember, Bowden was never fired. He was allowed to resign, with a teary-eyed speech about how he's about the name on the front of the jersey, not the back. And that was after four-plus years of some of the worst GM-ing the world's ever seen.
The Nationals aren't the first organization where accoutability functioned in inverse proportion to authority. Legions of GM workers got their walking papers before Rick Wagoner finally had to face the music. Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld signed off on torture and invaded Iraq without a plan, and it's Lynndie England who takes the fall.
Of course, it doesn't have to be this way. There are healthy, functioning organizations out there where the buck stops at the top in a meaningful way. Scapegoating down is often a sign of a poorly run operation, and the Nationals have it down cold.
After all, if you were going to lay the blame at one person's feet, who would it be? Kasten? Well, he didn't want Bowden in the first place, so you can't hardly blame him for the mess he wrought. Rizzo? Dude just got here. Bowden? Yeah, that's clearly the person I think is most at fault, but even he didn't get to hire his own people. Rizzo was imposed on him, he inherited Dana Brown, and he didn't have Kasten's support.
And of course, Manny inherited St. Claire. Bowden kept him on. Would Acta have picked him if he'd had a chance to hire his own coaches? Who knows? And then yesterday we were told that Rizzo fired St. Claire, not Manny.
The only solution here is to clean house. Put someone in charge of everything, and get out of the way. Either that's Stan or someone else (you can't fire an owner, but he could lose his management authority if Lerner wanted him out). Then that person hires a GM (permanent), who hires a manager, who hires coaches. And then you'll at least know who's in charge of what, and whom to fire when firing time comes.