Walter Johnson and George Washington

Next to the apocryphal story about George Washington and the cherry tree, the most familiar tale told about the Father of Our Country involves what he threw across the Rappahannock River. It was even mentioned on the iconic Beach Boys’ album, All Summer Long, in 1964.* Unlike the essential details of young George chopping down … Continue reading Walter Johnson and George Washington

July 6, 1920: Nats yield a record 14 runs in an inning

The New York Yankees reclaimed first place in American League with a 17-0 pounding of Washington on Tuesday, July 6, 1920, at the ballpark that would become known as Griffith Stadium. What made the game more memorable, however, was what happened in the fifth inning. That's when the Yankees scored what at that time was … Continue reading July 6, 1920: Nats yield a record 14 runs in an inning

The Cracker Jack Classics and other RFK exhibitions

For six years, starting in 1982, Robert F. Kennedy Stadium played host to a star-studded old-timers game that was originally called the Cracker Jack Old Timers Baseball Classic. On July 19, 1982, a crowd of 29,196 attended the first of these five-inning games with the proceeds benefiting players who retired before the pension system in … Continue reading The Cracker Jack Classics and other RFK exhibitions

Team with the fewest stolen bases in a season? The 1957 Senators

For a variety of reasons, stolen-base attempts have ticked up in 2022 after several years of decline. Restrictions on the positioning of infielders could take effect next season, with the intent of producing more base hits, which could increase the importance of successful stolen-base attempts. So it’s not likely steals will ever again drop to … Continue reading Team with the fewest stolen bases in a season? The 1957 Senators

July 4, 1940: George Case ties record for most hits in a double-header

On July 4, 1940, at Griffith Stadium, speedy Senators’ outfielder George Case had nine hits in a double-header against the Athletics, matching a major league record that still stands. In the modern era (post-1900), this record is held by six others, but was achieved the last time more than 60 years ago. Case’s 9-for-10 was … Continue reading July 4, 1940: George Case ties record for most hits in a double-header

In 20th and 21st centuries, the Nats haven’t been no-hit at home

The Nationals, 2005 to 2022: Nationals’ fans have fond memories of the first no-hitter for the team. Jordan Zimmermann threw it at Nationals Park against the Marlins on the final day of the 2014 season. With two outs in the ninth, it took a back-to-the-plate, diving catch, by rookie outfielder Steven Sousa Jr. to preserve … Continue reading In 20th and 21st centuries, the Nats haven’t been no-hit at home

Ron Hansen’s 1968 unassisted triple play

More than half a century has passed since a player for the Washington Senators accomplished one of the rarest feats in the game: an unassisted triple play. It happened on July 30, 1968, a blowout loss for Washington during a season in which the Senators became the last American League team to finish in 10th … Continue reading Ron Hansen’s 1968 unassisted triple play

The Nats’ late-season nightmares, 1955-1960

The original Washington American League franchise finished with a winning record -- barely -- for the last time in 1952. By winning on the last day of the season, it edged Boston for fifth place with a 78-76 record. Attendance at Griffith Stadium, with the league’s smallest capacity, was just shy of 700,000, but more … Continue reading The Nats’ late-season nightmares, 1955-1960

Sept. 26, 1964: At D.C. Stadium, Mel Stottlemyre became the last pitcher to get five hits

Under the new collective bargaining agreement, the designated hitter became universal for 2022. Pitchers, unless another Shohei Ohtani emerges, will no longer routinely bat in either league. So it’s worth looking back at a memorable game 58 seasons ago: September 26, 1964, the last time a pitcher actually had – and will ever again have … Continue reading Sept. 26, 1964: At D.C. Stadium, Mel Stottlemyre became the last pitcher to get five hits

April 11, 1966: Emmett Ashford’s debut came at D.C. Stadium

Emmett Ashford had trouble getting into D.C. Stadium on April 11, 1966, to become the first Black umpire in the Major Leagues. A Secret Service detail protecting Vice President Hubert Humphrey, there to throw out opening day’s ceremonial first pitch, stopped Ashford under the grandstands as he entered the stadium. “Listen, there are no Negro … Continue reading April 11, 1966: Emmett Ashford’s debut came at D.C. Stadium