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Hey Washington Nationals: Don’t Ever Let Teddy Win

In Baseball, Fandom on October 3, 2012 at 12:04 pm

By Ryan Swanson

Update (10/4): The Washington Nationals caved.  Last night, October 3, 2012, Teddy broke his 525 race losing streak. He defeated mascots Jefferson, Lincoln and Washington in the 4th inning Presidents race at Nats Park. What a shame. I stand by my post from yesterday.  

Hey Washington Nationals: Don’t Ever You Should Have Never Let Teddy Win

Today, on the last day of Major League Baseball’s regular season, Washington D.C. has much to celebrate.  The Nationals have clinched the National League East division title and are headed to the playoffs.  Gio Gonzales, Bryce Harper, and Ryan Zimmerman lead a young talented ensemble that seems destined not only to make a run at the World Series this year, but for seasons to come.  The shutdown of Steven Strasburg doesn’t seem to have derailed the team. When the playoffs start this weekend, it will be the first time since 1933 that playoff baseball (not including the Negro Leagues) will take place in the District.  Washington’s long losing nightmare seems to be over.

But not for Teddy Roosevelt.  Teddy racked up his 525th consecutive loss last night at NatsPark.  Confused?  I am, of course, talking about Teddy the mascot.  In the middle of the fourth inning at Nats’ home games, the presidential mascot race around the field takes place.  Teddy Roosevelt faces (always loses to) George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln.  Whether by disqualification, ineptness, showing up in the wrong place or at the wrong time, or simply because he’s too slow Teddy always loses.  Every time.  The other three presidents split the victories.  And this has become a thing in Washington. Read the rest of this entry »

Birdland Memories: Coming to Terms with a Glorious Past in a Playoff-Bound Present

In Fandom on October 2, 2012 at 4:22 pm

By Richard Hardesty

“He was, and is, Mr. Oriole”

 On Saturday evening, the Baltimore Orioles completed their Legends Celebration Series by unveiling the sculpture honoring Gold Glove-winning third baseman Brooks Robinson. Robinson played twenty-three years with the Orioles, winning sixteen Gold Glove awards, two world championships, and the 1964 American League Most Valuable Player Award (MVP). In 1970, Robinson’s glove and bat work earned him the World Series MVP, giving nightmares to then-Cincinnati Reds manager Sparky Anderson.[1] Robinson retired seven years later, and, in 1983, he entered the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Robinson represented one of six Orioles legends honored in bronze during the 2012 season. Yet, more than any other Oriole legend, Robinson crystallized the tough process the current organization endured to accept its glorious past. From 1960 to 1985, the Orioles served as a model baseball franchise, enjoying twenty-three winning seasons, seven American League East titles, six American League championships, and three World Series titles. Robinson served as the face of the franchise during most of the team’s glory years. As Baltimore businessman Henry A. Rosenberg said, “He was, and is, Mr. Oriole.”[2] Baltimore embraced Robinson, establishing a connection so strong that Associated Press sportswriter Gordon Beard once famously remarked, “Brooks never asked anyone to name a candy bar after him. In Baltimore, people name their children after him.”[3] Read the rest of this entry »

The end of nightmares

In Fandom, NASCAR, Soccer on July 2, 2012 at 2:38 pm

by Rwany Sibaja

363 and 1462. Two numbers that some fans in Argentina and the United States knew all too well.

Trezeguet and River celebrate

For fans of River Plate, one of the major soccer clubs in the world and Argentina, 363 days of playing in the “Nacional B” division was unthinkable. It was bad enough that the club was relegated for the first time in its 111-year history last July, but the possibility of being unable to ascend back to the first division was too much. How could a club that won 34 national championships struggle to defeat teams playing in stadiums that looked more like practice facilities? Yet, here was River Plate suffering through a 0-0 tie against Almirante Brown in front of 60,000 of their own fans who were on pins and needles. Outside the stadium, irate fans clashed with the police during the first half of the match. Inside the “Monumental” a collective sense of disbelief created a tense situation by halftime, with many fans holding back tears.  In a “nightmare” season, many River fans wondered what they did to deserve such punishment…despite the fact that they entered the final day of the season tied for first place.

1462 days also seemed like a long nightmare for fans of “Junior Nation”. Read the rest of this entry »

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