Trea Turner: the “most overlooked superstar”

One of the nation’s best baseball writers, Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, has a knack for shedding new light on his subjects, which is precisely what he did in a 2021 column about Trea Turner. (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/05/sports/baseball/trea-turner-nationals.html) Kepner called Turner “baseball’s most overlooked superstar,” pointing out that the Nats’ shortstop topped the much-touted Fernando … Continue reading Trea Turner: the “most overlooked superstar”

Did Goslin and Myer really lead the A.L. in batting?

Before Juan Soto finished with the National League’s highest batting average in 2020, playing in 47 of Washington’s 60 games, four players with the original Washington Senators had won American League batting titles. One of them – Mickey Vernon -- did it twice: in 1946 and 1953. Unlike the other three winners, his batting titles, … Continue reading Did Goslin and Myer really lead the A.L. in batting?

The 1867 Nationals Western Tour

The original Washington National Baseball Club was a top-level, ostensibly amateur, team in the 1860s. But like other highly skilled teams of that era, the team was made up of what are often known as “ringers” brought in from elsewhere and given no-show jobs by wealthy and well-connected baseball enthusiasts. The first professional league, the … Continue reading The 1867 Nationals Western Tour

Eddie Yost, the Nats’ “Walking Man”

One of those rare players who never spent a day in the minors, Eddie Yost was the regular third baseman for Washington from 1947 through 1958. Despite batting averages between .224 and .249 in six of those seasons in D.C., Yost walked enough to lead the American League six times. He amassed a season-high 151 … Continue reading Eddie Yost, the Nats’ “Walking Man”

George Brunet: one-time Senator, all-time record holder

Jan. 2, 2021: Left-hander George Brunet pitched for the expansion Senators in 1970, near the end of his MLB career, but he went on to pitch in Mexico well into the 1980s. When it was over, he had pitched professionally in a record 33 consecutive seasons, eventually setting the minor league record for strikeouts and … Continue reading George Brunet: one-time Senator, all-time record holder

Is Soto the next Ted Williams? MLB.com says so

Update Dec. 24, 2020: On Dec. 5, 2020, under the headline “This young star is the next Ted Williams,” MLB.com’s Mike Petriello took a deep dive into Juan Soto’s performance through the 2020 season. (https://www.mlb.com/news/juan-soto-is-on-hall-of-fame-track) Nationals fans are well aware of how jaw-droppingly good Soto has been since his debut, but it was great to … Continue reading Is Soto the next Ted Williams? MLB.com says so

Bert Shepard, a Washington Senator, an American hero

Dec. 1, 2020: Thanks to the 1949 film starring Jimmy Stewart, Monty Stratton remains the most famous ballplayer who came back after a leg amputation to play professionally again. Yet longtime Washington baseball fans know that an even more inspiring story is that of a man who pitched for the Senators. On August 4, 1945, … Continue reading Bert Shepard, a Washington Senator, an American hero

Sanchez and Scherzer: a pair of historic performances

Nov. 1, 2020: Twice in MLB playoff history, a team has had two of its pitchers carry no-hitters into the sixth innings or later in back-to-back games. The two teams were different – the Detroit Tigers in 2013 and the Washington Nationals in 2019 – but the two pitchers were the same: Anibal Sanchez and … Continue reading Sanchez and Scherzer: a pair of historic performances

Stevenson’s outside- and inside-the-park homers

When Andrew Stevenson’s fly ball got past the Mets left fielder in the first game of the Sept. 26, 2020, double-header, the result was an inside-the-park home run, the least common hit in modern baseball. What made Stevenson’s race around the bases even more unusual was what had happened in his previous at-bat: He had … Continue reading Stevenson’s outside- and inside-the-park homers