WASHINGTON -- Braves manager Bobby Cox doesn't believe that Stan Kasten will retire once he leaves as president of the Nationals at the end of the season. Cox should know. The two worked together for over a decade in the Braves organization. Kasten was the team's president at the time.
"He's still young," Cox said. "He still has a lot of energy and vigor. I don't know what he is going to do."
Cox believes Kasten would make a good Major League Baseball Commissioner once Bud Selig retires in that role.
"He's smart, he knows the game, he's a lawyer, he loves baseball more than anything," Cox said of Kasten. "He knows the inner workings of it. He would be a solid choice, in my opinion."
Asked if Kasten would get along with the Baseball Players Association, Cox said: "It would be like [White Sox manager] Ozzie [Guillen] and [general manager] Kenny Williams. They would do a lot of screaming and yelling, but they would love each other. Stan has dealt with them for so many years. He would understand it all, that's for sure.
Morgan ready to return from suspension
WASHINGTON -- Nationals center fielder Nyjer Morgan will be back in the starting lineup Saturday afternoon against the Braves.
Morgan is currently serving an eight-game suspension for trying to knock down Cardinals catcher Bryan Anderson -- even though Anderson didn't have possession of the ball -- using inappropriate language toward fans at Sun Life Stadium and having a physical altercation with Marlins right-hander Chris Volstad.
"I'm glad to put everything in the past and move forward," Morgan said. "It was a lesson learned. I now have to work with my teammates, and try to help this organization get to the top."
Morgan acknowledged that he had a hard time watching the Nationals in the stands. He did watch two games with general manager Mike Rizzo in the opposing executive suite in Philadelphia.
"I want to go to war with the boys. It's in my mentality," Morgan said. "I was able to watch the games from a different perspective. It helps me understand certain situations. It slowed the game down for me, so I can understand what to do. I learned a lot from sitting in the stands."
Morgan said watching the games in the stands taught him to relax and not worry about results like he did prior to his suspension.
"[The results] will come to me, instead of me [trying to force things]," Morgan said.
Despite having the worst season of his career, the Nationals are expected to bring Morgan back for the 2011 season because of his defense. He wants to show Rizzo, his biggest supporter, that he can be consistent at the plate. Morgan is hitting .258 with 23 RBIs.
"I know I can play this game. I know the player that I want to be," Morgan said. "There were too many inconsistencies this year. If I have the consistency, things will be a lot better. I just want to worry about what I can take care of instead of worrying about other things."
Manager Jim Riggleman isn't sure where to place Morgan in the lineup Saturday. The skipper currently likes Danny Espinosa and Ian Desmond as the top two hitters in the order. With Ryan Zimmerman out of the lineup because of a rib injury, Riggleman most likely will bat Desmond somewhere in the middle of the order. Riggleman hinted that Morgan could bat second.
Zimmerman sits out second straight game
WASHINGTON -- Nationals third baseman Ryan Zimmerman missed his second consecutive game because of a right intercostal [rib] strain. Zimmerman, who did not take batting practice before Friday's game against the Braves, said he is still sore and hopes to play this weekend.
"I'm day-to-day, and we'll go from there," Zimmerman said.
The Nationals will honor Braves manager Bobby Cox at Nationals Park on Sunday. Cox is retiring at the end of the season. ... The Nationals have to chance to finish the season at home with a record over .500 since 2006. Entering Friday's action against the Braves, Washington is 38-37 this season.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. MLB.com reporter Mark Bowman contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.