Soto, at 23, is in a class by himself

Juan Soto turned 23 on October 25, 2021. Although he finished second to Bryce Harper for the National League 2021 Most Valuable Player award*, he set or extended a number of statistical marks during a trying season for the Washington Nationals. In November, for the second year in a row, fans helped vote him onto … Continue reading Soto, at 23, is in a class by himself

A hospital’s mini-tribute to Griffith Stadium

After Washington's Griffith Stadium was torn down in February 1965, nearby Howard University bought the 8.5-acre property for $1.5 million to build what is now a 250-bed teaching hospital. A historic marker noting existence of the stadium from 1911 until its demolition was placed outside the new hospital in 2011, but nothing more. In 2013, … Continue reading A hospital’s mini-tribute to Griffith Stadium

May 30-June 18, 1912: A doormat no more, Washington wins record 17 in a row

When Clark Griffith was persuaded in the fall of 1911 to take charge of Washington’s American League franchise as manager and part owner, the team had never won more than 67 games or finished higher than sixth place. The Senators, as everybody called them despite attempts to jettison the name, had finished seventh in 1911 … Continue reading May 30-June 18, 1912: A doormat no more, Washington wins record 17 in a row

The self-inflicted wounds of the 2021 season

After concluding in late July that the Nationals were not going to compete for a post-season berth, team president and general manager Mike Rizzo jettisoned eight key players on 2021 team: future Hall-of-Famer Max Scherzer, all-star shortstop Trea Turner, record-setting slugger Kyle Schwarber, veteran utility man Josh Harrison. starting catcher Yan Gomes, closer Brad Hand, … Continue reading The self-inflicted wounds of the 2021 season

The last Senators’ game and Howard’s homer

Every Washington baseball fan old enough can remember it. Those younger undoubtedly have heard about it: the last game played by the Senators, September 30, 1971, at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium. A week earlier, American League owners had given the financial-cheat owner, Bob Short, permission to move the expansion franchise to Arlington, Texas. Many of … Continue reading The last Senators’ game and Howard’s homer

Expansion Nats’ finale not the only Washington forfeit

The expansion Nats famously had to forfeit the final game, September 30, 1971, at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium. The Senators, already scheduled to move to Texas for the 1972 season, were an out away from beating the Yankees, 7-5, in an otherwise meaningless season finale. Angry fans stormed the field and made off with the … Continue reading Expansion Nats’ finale not the only Washington forfeit

First umpire to wear glasses did it at Griffith Stadium — in 1956

Ed Rommel, a knuckleballer who won 171 games in 13 seasons beginning in 1920, later spent 22 years as an American League umpire. On April 18, 1956, he became the first umpire in the 20th Century to wear eyeglasses during a game. His groundbreaking move, unnoticed at the time, came at Griffith Stadium on a … Continue reading First umpire to wear glasses did it at Griffith Stadium — in 1956

July 31, 2018: Nationals score a record 25 runs

The 2018 season at the trade deadline hadn’t gone as Dave Martinez had hoped in his first year managing the Nationals. His team, the preseason favorite to repeat as N.L. East champions, were in third place, a game under .500, on July 31. Other than dumping reliever Brandon Kintzler’s salary on the Cubs, General Manager … Continue reading July 31, 2018: Nationals score a record 25 runs

Sept. 11, 1949: Nats pitchers set dubious record, walking 11 Yankees in one inning.

Two years after finishing fourth – the Griffith franchise’s last time in the first division – Washington fell to the A.L. basement with 104 losses. On September 11, 1949, the Senators were in New York to play their second doubleheader in two days against the Yankees. The first-place Yanks began the day a game up … Continue reading Sept. 11, 1949: Nats pitchers set dubious record, walking 11 Yankees in one inning.

May 8, 2016: Harper’s seven times up with no at-bats

On May 8, 2016, at Chicago’s Wrigley Field, the Nationals’ Bryce Harper became the first player in major league history to reach base seven times without an official at-bat. He also became the fourth player to be walked six times in a game. Harper was hit by a pitch the one time he didn’t walk. … Continue reading May 8, 2016: Harper’s seven times up with no at-bats