By Bill Ladson /

11/11/09 7:51 PM EST

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals have decided to name Jim Riggleman the permanent manager, according to a baseball source. The news comes five months after he was named the interim skipper, replacing Manny Acta.

A news conference is scheduled for Thursday at Nationals Park.

Riggleman, who finished ahead of Bobby Valentine in the managerial search, indicated on Monday that a decision would be made after the General Managers' Meetings, which ended Wednesday.

"In talking to some people up in Washington, the feeling I'm getting is that there will be [something happening] between the General Managers' Meetings and the Winter Meetings," Riggleman said recently. "That leaves a big gap, but I think we will know something shortly after [general manager] Mike [Rizzo] gets back from Chicago. So I guess that would lead toward this week or early next week. I think we will have some type of decision made."

Riggleman, who was not available for comment on Wednesday, took over as the manager after the All-Star break, and the Nationals played harder and mostly mistake-free baseball. The team went 33-42 under Riggleman.

Riggleman was praised by Rizzo for the job that the skipper did during the second half of the season.

"Like I said in the past, we have a terrific in-house candidate in Jim Riggleman, who has as good a chance as anybody to becoming the manager for the Washington Nationals. The search is going to begin a little more seriously in the very near future," Rizzo said recently.