Canine Teddy fan wins Fan of the Game at Pups in the Park

If the 2012 elections were held today, Teddy Roosevelt has an early “leg up” on the canine vote.

Cachucha the pug of Adams Morgan at the Nationals Park Pups in the Park Day photo by Johanna DiazAdams Morgan pug Cachucha brought her owner Johanna Diaz to Nationals Park for Saturday’s “Pups in the Park” day, decked out to support her favorite racing president, Teddy Roosevelt.

Cachucha took the pre-game parade seriously, sporting an elaborate “float” that included a Teddy Roosevelt bobblehead doll mounted on her back.

“She was really hoping her float would give him an edge for a win,” said Diaz.
Let Teddy Win Dog T-Shirt“She was soaking in the glory of being on the field, and sending some good vibes for Teddy.”

Sadly, the pups simply proved to be a distraction for Roosevelt, but Cachucha got a consolation prize: She was featured on the HD scoreboard and voted fan of the game by the Nationals Park crowd.

“Teddy has always been her favorite,” added Diaz. “If she could wear a monocle, she would.”

With three more Pups in the Park promotions scheduled for this summer, perhaps Cachucha can start a whole canine cheering section for our favorite president.

…and if a float isn’t your dog’s thing, there’s always the Let Teddy Win T-Shirt for dogs (above).

Nationals Park photo courtesy of Johanna Diaz

Video: Pups in the Park proves distracting for animal lover Teddy Roosevelt

Pups in the Park at Nationals ParkHundreds of dogs and their owners got to witness another walk-off win for the Nationals Saturday as the team’s annual Pups in the Park promotion returned to Nationals Park.

Barkley, the canine mascot of the Washington Humane Society, was on hand to assist with the day’s festivities, but proved to be a distraction for fellow mascot and noted animal lover Teddy Roosevelt. B

Barkley and Teddy were busy playing in the outfield as the fourth-inning presidents race got underway. Roosevelt failed to compete as George Washington took the tape.

The sellout event, in which tickets and accommodations are provided for dogs and their owners, has been expanded to four dates this season. Dog tickets are still available for June 2 against the Atlanta Braves, July 7 against the Colorado Rockies and Sept. 22 against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Photo by Flickr member Devilish Wahoo

Video: Teddy gives priority to National High Five Day

Thursday was National High Five Day, and even if presidents race fans are unfamiliar with the holiday, it should come as no surprise that it did not escape the attention of one Theodore Roosevelt.

When the presidents were announced for Thursday night’s race at Nationals Park, Teddy failed to appear on the field. As George, Tom, and Abe paused to look up at the Nationals Park HD scoreboard, Teddy appeared on the concourse, still giving out high fives to fans.

In a sprint to a photo finish, George Washington took his second victory of the young season.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Wire to wire with no shenanigans

The smallest crowd of the season got to witness an increasing rarity Wednesday night at Nationals Park. The Nationals racing presidents ran wire to wire with no tricks, gimmicks, or foul play.

Teddy Roosevelt got a hot start but showboated early, skipping and taking a wide turn out of the center field gate. The pause proved costly in the stretch, as the Bull Moose put on a late charge but didn’t have quite enough left to catch Abe Lincoln.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Teddy stops to look for the Shuttle Discovery

Teddy Roosevelt looks for the Space Shuttle during the Presidents Race - photo by Cheryl NicholsThe Space Shuttle Discovery’s flight to its final resting place went right over South Capital Street Tuesday morning, but Teddy Roosevelt must have missed the spectacle, because when the presidents race began just before 8:00pm at Nationals Park, Roosevelt was still looking up.

As they promised they would from time to time, the Nationals reversed the direction of the fourth-inning race, and this time, Teddy got the memo, jumping out to an early lead along the left field warning track.

But Teddy stopped shortly after the race began to look up at the skies. It was only through the prompting of PA Announcer Jerome Hruska that Teddy got back to running, but by then it was too late. In a photo finish, Jefferson edged George Washington for the win.

Photo courtesy Cheryl Nichols/DistrictSportsPage
Video courtesy YouTube member lfahome

Video: Washington turns on Jefferson in the outfield

Washington Nationals Presidents Race: George Washington turns on Thomas Jefferson on Emancipation DayWashington Nationals Presidents Race: George Washington tackles Thomas Jefferson in the outfield on Emancipation DayIt was Emancipation Day Monday, and followers of the Washington Nationals presidents race were calling on Twitter for an easy commemorative victory for Abraham Lincoln.

It took a little unexpected help from two slave owners to make it happen.

After jumping to an early lead, George Washington turned around on the warning track and plowed right into Thomas Jefferson, knocking him into the outfield wall and leaving both on the ground.

With George and Tom out of the way, the Great Emancipator sprinted past Roosevelt for the win.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Werth runs across the finish line. Teddy doesn’t.

As promised, here’s the full video of today’s presidents race, in which Jayson Werth busted across the finish line before the race began.

Perhaps Werth was trying to silently protest on behalf of the Bull Moose Party. Perhaps he was trying to set an example for Teddy. Either way, Roosevelt failed to deliver, cutting the outfield corner to take the lead, but then tripping short of the finish line.

Teddy is now the only racing president without a victory in 2012.



Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Jayson Werth, still messing with the presidents race

As the Washington Nationals left the field after the top of the fourth inning today, right fielder Jayson Werth took the opportunity to once again interfere with the Nats’ presidents race.

Werth is an outspoken critic of the conspiracy that keeps Teddy Roosevelt out of the win column at Nationals Park, but this time chose a less disruptive way to protest, running through the finish line tape before the race began.

The Nat Pack recovered in time to reset the finish line. Roosevelt trailed early, but inspired by Abe’s behavior of the day before, decided to try the trick himself, cutting the outfield corner to take the lead from Jefferson.

Racing Presidents Jackie Robinson Day by Cheryl NicholsBut in the home stretch, Jefferson tripped behind Teddy, and Roosevelt toppled like a Domino, allowing George Washington to run past for the victory.

The racing presidents all wore #42 Sunday, as part of Major League Baseball’s Jackie Robinson Day.

More video to follow.

Photo courtesy Cheryl Nichols/DistrictSportsPage

Video: Change in presidents race direction confuses Teddy too. Abe cheats but gets the win.

Presidents Race Teddy Runs the wrong wayNationals presidents race Teddy behindWashington Nationals Presidents Race Abe Lincoln WinsTeddy in Cherry Blossom Parade photo by Sarah GuthrieThe Nationals’ apparent decision to vary the location of the presidents race finish line in 2012 isn’t just confusing for the spectators at Nationals Park. Apparently Teddy Roosevelt is a bit out of sorts over it as well.

After alternating the location for the first two games, the Nationals gave the reasonable impression that the pattern might continue, so when the gates opened for Saturday’s 4th inning presidents race, Roosevelt took off for the 3rd base line.

After realizing he’d run the wrong way, Teddy slammed on the breaks and reversed course, but by then, he was a distant 4th with no chance to catch George Washington.

Abe Lincoln, however, cut the outfield corner to pass George at the turn, and in a tight 3-way finish, edged out his competition to take the tape.

“Honest” Abe’s history of cheating is well-documented, but presidents race finish line judge Screech once again ignored Abe’s transgression, and awarded the victory to Abe.

The race capped a busy day for Teddy and the rest of the racing presidents.

After completing a rare late night presidents race doubleheader in extra innings last night, the team was up early to participate in this morning’s National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade.

Video below courtesy of YouTube member lfahome.
Parade photo by Sarah Guthrie.

Video: Presidents race twice. Abe ambushes Teddy in the 13th inning. TJ takes two.

As promised, the Nationals moved the presidents race back to the first base line for Friday’s outing, but despite getting a rare second chance, the result was the same for poor Teddy Roosevelt.

The racing presidents on Segway personal trainersPresidents-Race-Extra-InningsIn the 4th inning, the presidents competed aboard Segway personal transporters, and despite his height, Jefferson managed to outmaneuver the other racing presidents, speeding around Teddy to take the victory.

Fans in attendance got a rare treat when the game stretched into the 13th inning: a second official presidents race. It was the ninth such opportunity in Nationals history — an opportunity that was wasted on Lincoln, who chose to hide in the bullpen instead of participate, then jump out mid-race to ambush Teddy Roosevelt.

With Teddy on the ground, Jefferson and Washington burst by and made it a two-man race, with Tom edging George at the wire to take an unprecedented 3-0 lead in the standings after just two home games.

The first race:

And the second race:

Videos courtesy YouTube member lfahome

Nats say presidents race move wasn’t to avoid foul play

The Nats are saying Thursday’s surprise change in direction of the opening day presidents race was not designed to avoid foul play by the likes of Jayson Werth, according to a report this morning by Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post.

The source said that the team plans to alternate which side of the field the presidents run on, a strategy that’s equally likely to confound any sabotage plans, and anybody else who wants to (ahem) cheer and/or photograph the finish line.

Steinberg is a close follower of the Let Teddy Win movement, and thank goodness, because the Post gets messages returned a lot faster than the rest of us. LTW’s inquiries about future plans for the race were not answered.

UPDATE: Soon after this posted, I heard back from a Nats spokesperson who wanted to point out that Thursday was not the first time that the Presidents have run that path. “We like to keep fans on their toes and mix the race up from game to game, depending on what works best,” she said. When had they run that path before? On the final race of the 2011 season.

Photo by Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page

Video: Jefferson slips Teddy and CM Punk’s trap as the presidents race is moved for 2012

If opening day at Nationals Park was any indication, it’s going to be a wild and exciting year on South Capitol Street.

A sellout crowd turned out Thursday afternoon to watch Gio Gonzalez pitch a gem in his Nationals Park debut, capped by a walk-off extra-innings Nationals victory that moved the team into sole possession of first place in the NL East. With the team having seemingly turned a corner, Teddy Roosevelt fans were hoping the Nats might use the occasion to finally Let Teddy Win.

Teddy Roosevelt and CM PunkWashington Nationals Racing Presidents get tied up in their shoelacesTeddy Roosevelt Washington Nationals presidents raceWashington Nationals presidents race Teddy Roosevelt Thomas JeffersonWashington Nationals presidents race photo finishDream on.

In a surprise move, the Nationals moved the presidents race to the left field/third base line and out of reach of the Nats bullpen, protecting the race against a repeat of last season’s attempted interference by players on Teddy’s behalf.

Roosevelt made a third inning appearance on the Nationals Park scoreboard with professional wrestler CM Punk. The clip showed the two sneaking up on Teddy’s napping opponents behind the centerfield wall, tying their shoelaces together, and then sneaking off (video below).

When the race began in the middle of the fourth inning, Teddy’s rivals George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln immediately tripped on their shoelaces and tumbled onto the warning track.

Roosevelt took off, hopping and skipping around the left field corner on his way to the finish line.

But the quick-thinking Jefferson was on his tail, running barefoot and carrying the shoes he slipped off as soon as he had discovered the scheme.

TJ caught Teddy as they approached the finish line, holding out his sneakers to break the tape and steal the first presidents race of 2012.

As for their move of the presidents race to the opposite side of the stadium, the Nats have so far been mum; but after the game, outspoken Teddy supporter Jayson Werth expressed his displeasure once again with the conspiracy.

“What’s the poor guy got to do to get a win?,” Werth said. “A great American president. Just a great American, period.”

An informal survey of fans in the stands suggested that season ticket holders are not happy with the move either.

The presidents have built a loyal cheering section along the right field and first base lines, home to the Nats’ largest season ticket base. All eyes will be on the field for the fourth inning Friday to find out if order will be restored.

Videos courtesy YouTube member lfahome

Is there a legal remedy to Let Teddy Win?

This morning WTOP radio’s Brennan Haselton raises a critical question for the Let Teddy Win movement in advance of today’s home opener: Does Teddy have a legal remedy vs. the Nationals?

Haselton features input from WTOP Capitol Hill correspondent Dave McConnell and American University law professor Stephen Vladeck, among others. “Teddy really is a victim here,” Vladeck proposes, “and the question is why can’t the law provide him with a remedy?”

It’s a fascinating question and a great piece of journalism, so I’ll even forgive Haselton for getting Teddy’s loss count wrong. After all, Teddy’s streak could end today. Listen Now.

UPDATE: Haselton’s feature was awarded the DC Society of Professional Journalists Award for Best Radio Feature of the year, with the Judge’s Comment: “Haselton telescopes humor, history, baseball and politics into must-listen radio. The kind of audio treat that brings smiles.”

New food & other changes for 2012 at Nationals Park

The Strasburger 8 pound burger at Nationals ParkAfter taking their first two series on the road, the Nats bring a winning record back to DC Thursday to kick off what many hope will be a new era noted for Curly Ws on South Capitol Street; but the changes in store for the home opener at Nationals Park go beyond the team’s winning ways.

New food options

Nationals Park food offerings have once again been updated in the off-season, with the most press going to the 8-pound Strasburger, a monstrous $59 offering meant for sharing and available only for select games at the Red Porch restaurant above center field. It will make it’s debut on opening day.

The Taste of the Majors stand behind section 117 has once again received a menu update with new and constantly-changing dishes that represent the visiting team. Look for 5-way Cincinnati Chili for the opening series against the Reds.

The Union Square restaurants along the Miller Lite Scoreboard Walk are adding a number of menu items, including hot dogs, pies, and Sweet Frites at Box Frites, Quesadillas and Churros and El Verano Taquería, and a fried chicken sandwich at Blue Smoke.

The former location of Florida Rock cement factory outside Nationals ParkAnacostia River Walk near Nationals ParkA turning point for the neighborhood

Many expect 2012 to be a turning point for the team on the field, and as timing would have it, it’s looking like a turning point for the neighborhood outside the stadium as well.

Outside the First Base gate, the long-envisioned river views from Nationals Park are finally beginning to take shape, as the Florida Rock cement factory that stood between the stadium and the river has finally been demolished.

For the first time, fans can walk along the river from a new bridge by Nationals Park to the new Yards Park development, including the Foundry Lofts building, which houses the first of several new restaurants.

Before and after the game

Half Street Fairgrounds at Nationals ParkHalf Street Fairgrounds outside Nationals ParkOn the opposite side of the field, the Half Street Fairgrounds makes its debut just across from the Centerfield gates, on the block formerly occupied by The Bullpen. The Half Street block is now dotted with an array of brightly-painted shipping containers stretching from M to N Streets, with each containing a different local food stand. Look for trucks from Bayou and Surfside, plus Red Hook Lobster Pound, DC Empanadas, Curbside Cupcakes, Tasty Kabob, Big Cheese, and others, with live entertainment before and after games. Fairgrounds owner Jason York told ABC 7 News they are “combining Eastern Market with food trucks.”

What hasn’t changed

Parking around Nationals Park remains a great value. Prices did not go up, and lots are as cheap as $5 if you’re willing to walk 10 minutes up South Capitol street. In previous seasons, availability has not been a problem, but lots fill fastest for sellout weekday games such as Thursday’s opener, so plan ahead.

Strasburger photo via Twitter by Tracee Wilkins

Video: Teddy fails to win at retirement community in final pre-season warmup

Nationals Racing Presidents visit the Greenspring Retirement CommunityNationals Racing Presidents visit the Greenspring Retirement CommunityIn a warm-up for Thursday’s home season opener at Nationals Park, Nationals racing presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Teddy Roosevelt ran a presidents race for residents Wednesday at the Greenspring Retirement Community in Springfield, Virginia.

While the residents enjoyed their lunch, George, Tom, and Teddy shot a few rounds of billiards, posed for pictures with the residents, and set up a makeshift course around the facility’s rec room, running what may have been the first presidents race indoor heat.

Abe Lincoln failed to make the appearance, but the absence of his chief nemesis proved no help to Roosevelt, who was clearly saving his energy for the official 2012 campaign.

Photos and video courtesy of the Washington Nationals

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,936 other followers

%d bloggers like this: