The Washington Nationals fired Manny Acta and replaced him with Jim Riggleman on July 14 during the Major League all-star break. The Nats were 26-61, a .298 winning percentage, 22.5 games behind the division leader.

Since then, under Riggleman, the Nats have gone 18-20, a .473 winning percentage, and have lost ground in the division standings, at 29.5 games behind the leader.

So Riggleman must have whipped this "underachieving" crew into shape, huh? Well, let's take a closer look at what has actually happened.

In the 38 games Riggleman has managed, the Nats have been one of the streakiest teams in baseball. His tenure started with a five-game losing streak. They've also had losing streaks of four, three and five again.

The Nats have also had winning streaks, of four, eight, and three games.

Pretty incredible, right. Of the 38 games, 32 have been decided in a streak of three games or longer.

We can't remove the eight game winning streak. But IF we could, we'd see the Nats at 10-20, a .333 winning percentage not all that dissimilar to the pre-all-star record.

So how does a team that went 6-11 under Riggleman in the first 15 games reel off eight straight wins, then go right back to sucking, losing nine of their next 13?

The same way they got there in the first place.

From July 12 through the eight-game winning streak, Ryan Zimmerman went .376/.441/.800 with 27 runs, 10 home runs and 23 RBIs in 23 games. The Nats went 14-11.

Since? 11-for-46 with eight walks (.239/.352/.435) with five runs, two homers and 10 RBIs in 13 games. At least he accidentally drove in a few runs when he did make contact, but hitting .239 got Bill Hall and J.J. Hardy sent packing out of Milwaukee. The Nats went 4-9.

Once again proving that as Ryan Zimmerman goes, so go the Nats. It doesn't matter who the manager is.