Video: Nats get superstitious, reverse presidents race direction and put a stop to Teddy victories

Blame the team. Blame Twitter. But the seven year conspiracy against Teddy Roosevelt seems to have been resurrected.

Racing president Teddy Roosevelt takes a dive July 25

Teddy Roosevelt takes a dive just short of the finish line July 25

Rally Cicada arrives too late to tackle Teddy Roosevelt July 26…

Teddy Roosevelt Takes a Dive Jul 26 Nationals Presidents Race 2

…but Teddy Roosevelt pretends to be tripped and falls anyway

Abe Lincoln leaps from the stands to tackle Teddy Roosevelt in the Washington Nationals Presidents Race

Abe Lincoln leaps from the stands to tackle Teddy Roosevelt July 27…

Abe Lincoln leaps from the stands to tackle Teddy Roosevelt 4

…as George Washington races by for the win


The Washington Nationals’ struggles have prompted hundreds of Tweets tallying the team’s total record since letting Teddy win at the end of last season, with some even calling it “the curse of Let Teddy Win.”

After suffering their sixth straight loss Wednesday, the Nats tried to shake things up. The direction of the race was switched, with the presidents now running towards a finish line on the third base side of the field. More significantly, a familiar but suspicious pattern suggests that the team revived its longstanding ban on Teddy Roosevelt victories at the same time.

On Thursday, the presidents ran left for the first time all season, and Teddy took a huge lead into the home stretch, but stumbled as if on queue, falling flat on his face just short of the finish line.

The next day, the Rally Cicada returned to Nationals Park, and appeared ready to ambush Teddy along the finish line. The bug arrived late and missed Teddy completely, yet Teddy pretended to be tripped and fell just short of victory.

Nats play-by-play announcer Bob Carpenter captured it best. “This town loves a good conspiracy,” he said on the broadcast. “That was the worst, ever.”

On Saturday, the Rough Rider once again took a big lead into the home stretch, but Abe Lincoln was waiting in ambush, and jumped out of the stands along the third base line, tackling Teddy to the ground, allowing George Washington to race by for the win. On Sunday, George Washington slammed into Teddy with a bicycle.

Teddy had won five races this season, but none on this homestand, and the team has won 4 of 5 games since the changes. If superstition holds, Teddy may be in for a long rest of the summer.

Videos: Abe Lincoln returns to his cheating ways, and Taft takes notes

Abe Lincoln tackles Teddy Roosevelt Nationals Presidents Race 7-5-13William Howard Taft and the Rally Cicada throw water coolerWilliam Howard Taft and the Rally Cicada throw water cooler
A week of non-stop presidents race cheating continued this weekend at Nationals Park, with William Howard Taft taking a few lessons from long-time cheater Abe Lincoln.

On Friday night, “Honest” Abe returned to old form, emerging from the bullpen to plow into Teddy Roosevelt mid-race. As Teddy tried to recover, Taft and Jefferson each piled on, pushing the Rough Rider back to the warning track as Abe preened and pranced across the finish line.

For Saturday’s game, it was Taft who positioned himself along the first base line, enlisting the return of this summer’s unlikely new foil, the Rally Cicada.

In the blistering afternoon heat, the cicada offered Taft a drink of water, but Taft took the entire water cooler and tossed it at his oncoming competitors, knocking them all to the ground and leaving him a clear path to victory.

Once again, no disqualifications were issued.

Here’s the video of Friday night’s victory by Abe:

And here’s is Saturday’s victory by Taft:

Videos courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: “Rally Cicada” leads Teddy to victory, inspires reserves

Cicada invades Nationals presidents raceCicada tackles Nationals racing presidentsCicada Washington Nationals Presidents RaceWith the Nats trailing early Sunday at Nationals Park, the team needed a rally, and got inspiration from the most unlikely of places.

When the presidents race began in the middle of the fourth inning, Teddy Roosevelt lined up near the finish line, bringing with him the same giant cicada that invaded Nationals Park on June 9.

P.A. announcer Jerome Hruska introduced the big insect as “The Rally Cicada,” and this time, the cicada was on Teddy’s side.

As the remaining presidents approached the home stretch, Teddy pushed the cicada at them like a bowling ball, toppling them all, then turned towards the finish line to collect his fourth victory of the season.

The Nationals followed with a furious effort, holding the Rockies scoreless while an onslaught of Nats reserves delivered two runs in the bottom half of the inning and four more in the eighth, but it wasn’t quite enough.

A beautiful slo-mo of Teddy’s cicada tackle below.

Video courtesy of YouTube user lfahome

Videos: Giant cicada invades Nationals Park, attacks Teddy Roosevelt

Seventeen year Cicada Brood II has been swarming the Virginia suburbs southwest of DC, leading some to wonder whether Nationals Park would soon be affected.

Cicada attacks Teddy Roosevelt Washington Nationals Park Presidents RaceCicada attacks Teddy Roosevelt Washington Nationals Park Presidents RaceCicada attacks Teddy Roosevelt Washington Nationals Presidents RaceThe answer arrived during the first game of Sunday’s day/night doubleheader in the form of the largest cicada spotting of the season: the six foot variety.

In the fourth inning of game one, Teddy Roosevelt emerged last from the presidents race starting gate, but quickly grabbed the lead and appeared to be on the way to his second straight victory.

But lurking in the stands was the very adult-size cicada, who jumped into the Rough Rider’s path and tackled him to the ground, following it up with a vicious body slam as George crossed the finish line.

When the presidents returned Sunday evening for the second game of the doubleheader, Teddy was prepared, racing from the start with a giant flyswatter. Teddy’s new nemesis appeared as suspected, but was not intimidated. The cicada met him in the outfield, grabbed the flyswatter, and beat Teddy to the ground. Abe Lincoln took the win.

Video of the first race below, plus a slo-mo version of Teddy’s takedown.

Videos courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

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