Team with 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 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

No-hitters in D.C. since 1901

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 No-hitters in D.C. since 1901

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

Chick Gandil, before the Black Sox

Before he became the key figure in the Black Sox scandal, Arnold “Chick” Gandil played a leading role in lifting the Washington Senators to respectability in the American League. While Walter Johnson’s pitching is rightly seen as the most important element of Washington’s rise, Gandil’s  bat and glove can’t be overlooked. From 1912 to 1915, … Continue reading Chick Gandil, before the Black Sox

In 1933, Joe Cronin had a record 13 hit in 3 games

In his first year as a playing manager, Joe Cronin had a charmed season. Already an established star, he had doubts that he could both manage and play at the level he had become accustomed to. He needn’t have worried. Cronin led the Griffith franchise to its third – and last – pennant, hit .309 … Continue reading In 1933, Joe Cronin had a record 13 hit in 3 games

Ted’s poor 1946 World Series: “The Curse of Mickey Haefner” 

Mickey Haefner was a decent lefty pitcher for an up-and-down Washington team from 1943 to ’49.  He won 10 or more games five seasons in a row, topping out at 16 in 1945.  No taller than 5-foot-7 (not 5-8, as he himself confirmed in 1943), his nickname was “Itsy-Bitsy.” Despite the “last in American League” … Continue reading Ted’s poor 1946 World Series: “The Curse of Mickey Haefner”