In addition to leading the Cincinnati Reds to two NL Central titles and three playoff appearances in six years, Baker previously led the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs, winning the 2002 National League pennant with the Giants.
Drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 1967 amateur draft out of Del Campo High School near Sacramento, CA, Baker began his professional baseball career as an outfielder for the Braves in 1968. After spending 16 full seasons with the Atlanta Braves, Los Angeles Dodgers, as well as a short tenure with the San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics, Baker finished his prosperous career as a player with a .278 batting average, 242 home runs, and 1,013 RBI.
Baker’s coaching career started with his former Dodger arch-rival: the San Francisco Giants. Baker began as a first base coach in 1988 and then spent the following four years (1989-1992) as the hitting coach before taking over as manager in 1993. In his very first year as Giants manager, he won the NL Manager of the Year award, leading the team to a 103-59 record, which was the second-best record in baseball that year behind the 104-58 Atlanta Braves. His Giants went on to win division titles in 1997 and again in 2000 after which Baker was honored as Manager of the Year for both years. In 2002, the Giants earned the Wild Card and advanced to the World Series where they lost in seven games to the Anaheim Angels.
In 2003, Baker left the Giants to join the Chicago Cubs, where he made a major impact in his first season as manager. With the help of an impressive pitching staff and sluggers such as Sammy Sosa and Moisés Alou, the Chicago Cubs were able to claim their first divisional title in over a decade. Baker left the Cubs following their 2006 season and subsequently went on to become an analyst for ESPN.
After two seasons away from professional baseball, Baker was named the Washington Nationals manager on Nov. 5, 2015. He will lead a talented roster, including Bryce Harper and Max Scherzer, to what the nation’s capital hopes is a World Series title.
Baker’s hobbies include hunting and fishing. He founded the Dusty Baker International Academy of Baseball in Sacramento and is supportive of many local charitable organizations.