Video: Presidents Race Deja Vu as That Cat tackles Teddy Roosevelt, Abe wins

With a losing record since Teddy Roosevelt first tasted victory in October, the Washington Nationals came to the conclusion Tuesday that something’s not working and shook up the roster to try to recapture some of their 2012 mojo.

Washington Nationals presidents race That Cat tackles Teddy RooseveltWashington Nationals presidents race That Cat tackles TeddyIf Wednesday’s fourth inning antics were any indication, they came to the same conclusion regarding the presidents race.

Following a familiar script from the previous six seasons, Teddy Roosevelt jumped out to a big lead that he extended into the home stretch.

Ignoring his recent victories, Nationals PA Announcer Jerome Hruska intoned “This could be the day. C’mon Teddy!,” before Teddy’s longtime nemesis “That Cat” appeared to block the finish line and tackle the Rough Rider to the ground.

Completing the narrative and adding insult to injury, the trailing president was Abe Lincoln, with only one win to his name this season, stealing the victory as Teddy lay on the ground.

Abe’s win pulled him into a tie with Teddy for last place in the presidents race standings.



Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Teddy triumphs in all star villains presidents race

Teddy Roosevelt Wins Kool Aid Man helpsTeddy Roosevelt Wins presidents race Kool Aid ManTeddy Roosevelt celebrates victory Nationals presidents raceTeddy Roosevelt celebrates victory Nationals presidents raceIt’s been a postseason of redemption for Nationals racing president Teddy Roosevelt, who is on a sudden winning streak after losing 525 straight races.

Facing possible elimination Thursday night at Nationals Park, infielder Mark DeRosa read the team a speech by Teddy Roosevelt before the game. Then, when the presidents race began, the Nats trotted out an all star cast of Teddy’s past nemeses to help exorcise his demons.

As George, Tom, and Abe raced around the warning track towards the first base line, they were met in succession by a who’s who of bad guys.

Long-time interloper That Cat tackled George Washington.  Then a shark who attacked Teddy in August took out Thomas Jefferson.

Luc the Lobster, who has made several appearances over the years, tackled Abe Lincoln.

By that time, George Washington was back on his feet and actually passed Teddy and looked ready to steal the victory, but Mr. Kool Aid, a fan favorite who last appeared in 2010, appeared from the stands and decked the founding father.

Teddy turned around and fell backwards over the finish line, then pranced and posed around the stadium, basking in the glow of victory as the sellout crowd chanted his name.

On the national broadcast, TBS analyst Bob Brenley took Teddy to task for his celebration. “You’re pimping it a little bit in front of the other presidents,” he said. “Act like you’ve done it before.”

After 7 seasons of losing, most fans seemed willing to cut the Rough Rider some slack.

Jayson Werth: “It’s bigger than me, man. It’s bigger than me.”

Jayson Werth says its bigger than meThat Cat interferes with the presidents race at Nationals ParkThat Cat tackles Teddy Roosevelt in the Washington Nationals presidents raceThat Cat takes down Teddy Roosevelt in the Washington Nationals Presidents raceThomas Jefferson wins the Washington Nationals presidents race

Saturday’s presidents race coup attempt by Jayson Werth stirred up expectations for more 4th-inning fireworks during Sunday’s home season finale at Nationals Park.

After Werth proclaimed that ““If Teddy can’t win, then no one wins,” speculation was rampant that one of two things would happen: either the Nats would succumb to popular pressure, or Werth would make a third attempt to secure a Bull Moose victory on his own.

But just before Sunday’s first pitch, Werth was asked privately about his plans, and his answer revealed all readers need to know about the anti-Teddy conspiracy in the Nationals front office.

“It’s bigger than me, man. It’s bigger than me,” he said, shaking his head. “I gave it my best shot.”

Whatever talking-to Werth received from Nationals management, and despite any assurances he gave them, it was clear nonetheless when Sunday’s race began that they weren’t taking any chances on another coup attempt in the season finale.

As the presidents were being introduced, the Nationals trotted out That Cat to patrol the first base line, flexing his muscles as if to dare Teddy to try to cross his path. Momma Screech stood by as well, in case reinforcements were needed.

As added protection against another right field revolt, the Nats moved the finish line to the third base side. After Washington, Lincoln, and Roosevelt began their usual route, Jefferson came out and bolted the other way towards left field and the new finish line.

As That Cat took down Tom, Abe, and Teddy in succession, Thomas Jefferson cruised across the tape uncontested.

Tom’s victory moved him into an improbable and first-ever season-ending tie with Abe Lincoln for the 2011 presidents race crown. If not for Werth’s antics on Saturday, Jefferson would have had the opportunity to win the title outright.

Meanwhile, the team’s rebuke of Werth is a rude awakening for Teddy fans who had hoped for an end to the conspiracy. After 441 races, the Rough Rider will enter the 2012 season without a single win, and the powers that be at the Nationals appear hell-bent on keeping it that way.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: That Cat Returns to thwart a sure Teddy Roosevelt Victory

That Cat returned to Nationals Park Tuesday night, and as the mysterious feline is known to do, threw a wrench into the presidents race procedings.

That Cat tackles Teddy Roosevelt in the Washington Nationals Presidents RaceThat Cat tackles Teddy Roosevelt in the Washington Nationals Presidents RaceWith a crowd braving the rain to see Stephen Strasburg’s return to baseball, perpetual showoff Abe Lincoln jumped out to a big lead, but as Abe traversed the warning track, Teddy Roosevelt put on an uncharasteristic burst of speed, passing all of the presidents and waving goodbye as he took the lead.

“Teddy’s got a huge lead now. There’s no way he’s gonna lose,” proclaimed Nationals Park P.A. announcer Jerome Hruska.

The kiss of death, apparently.

As Teddy passed by the stands in section 134, That Cat pounced.

Teddy never saw what him him, and George stole the tape.

Slo-mo take-down video follows:


Videos courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: That Cat returns, takes out three presidents

Washington Nationals Racing Presidents are attacked by That CatWashington Nationals Racing Presidents are attacked by That CatLong-time presidents race interloper That Cat made another disruptive appearance Wednesday night at Nationals Park.

As the fourth-inning race began, the t-shirt clad panther hid out by the right field bullpen gate, jumping out onto the warning track only as the racing presidents approached.

In one fell swoop, That Cat managed to take out George Washington, Abe Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt, leaving Thomas Jefferson with a clear path to the finish line before retreating to the bullpen.

Jefferson managed to avoid repeating the previous night’s mistakes, and postponed his celebration until after the race was finished.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome.

Video: Teddy sends That Cat to stop George Washington

George Washington, Abe Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson in the Washington Nationals Presidents RaceWashington Nationals Presidents Race: That Cat tackles George Washington as Teddy Roosevelt looks onRacing president Abe Lincoln leaps over That Cat to take the presidents raceWith George Washington coming off a recent 4-game winning streak and challenging Abe Lincoln for the season lead, Teddy Roosevelt decided he’d seen enough.

While George was taking an early lead in Tuesday’s 4th-inning race at Nationals Park, Teddy was waiting in foul territory, hiding in ambush along with long-time presidents race conspirator That Cat.

With George entering the home stretch, the t-shirt-clad panther lept out at Teddy’s urging, knocking our first president soundly to the ground. Lincoln, who was running close behind, made a nifty leap over the cat to jump into the lead.

“You been winning too many races lately George,” Teddy tweeted, “and I was tired of hearing about it!”

Abe and Tom didn’t seem to object, holding hands and skipping together at the finish line, but Abe crossed first and was awarded the victory.

And the slo-mo version:

Videos courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: That Cat, Rally Penguin aren’t enough to help Teddy on Lobster Day

Panther "That Cat" chases the Washington Nationals racing presidentsPanther "That Cat" tackles Thomas Jefferson during the Nationals Presidents RaceRally Penguin takes down Abe Lincoln - Nationals Presidents RacePresidents Race - Rally Penguin takes down AbeNational Lobster Day? Apparently so.

On Wednesday before a crowd of 27,130 at Nationals Park, Your crack Washington Nationals Mascot Team added to the pantheon of obscure holiday celebrations, as Teddy emerged for the 4th inning presidents race sporting lobster claws in celebration of, yes, National Lobster Day.

While the Nationals bats were shelling the Cardinals, and Livan Hernandez and Pudge Rodriquez picked them apart on the field, Teddy needed a little more help to stay in the hunt for victory number one.

Longtime presidents race conspirator That Cat made an appearance at the starting gate, chasing the presidents across the warning track and bringing Jefferson down with an open-field tackle, perhaps in retaliation for last night’s cheating incident.

With Jefferson out of the way, Abe Lincoln held a big lead heading down the first base line, but that’s where he ran into the Rally Penguin. The Penguin, who last appeared in 2008, was waiting in ambush, and clotheslined Abe, who never saw it coming.

That left Teddy with a clear shot at the finish line, and only George Washington to beat. But alas, TR had no more tricks up his sleeve. Lobster-clawed Teddy faded at the finish, and George took the win.

Photos courtesy of Ethan Ableman.
Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: “That Cat” returns, takes out Teddy Roosevelt

DC fans going through baseball withdrawal welcomed home the Washington Nationals Tuesday night to kick off a seven game homestand vs. the Mets and Giants at Nationals Park.

Abe Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt square off in the Nationals presidents raceThat Cat tackles Teddy RooseveltAbe Lincoln plays Connect FourTeddy Roosevelt likely felt that warm feeling as well, drawing huge cheers from the crowd despite missing the starting signal and jumping the gun for the 4th-inning presidents race.

He didn’t know the welcome he was about to receive.

Waiting in ambush along the first baseline was Teddy’s longtime nemesis “That Cat,” making his first appearance at Nationals Park since August of last year.

The cat was being held back by George Washington and Thomas Jefferson on the sidelines, but after Abe Lincoln passed by, they unleashed him on poor Teddy.

As That Cat celebrated his take-down of the Rough Rider, Abe took the win displaying a Connect Four game board for the Nationals Park faithful, popping four discs into it before exiting the field. The significance was probably lost on the crowd, but after his slow start to the season, Abe wanted the other presidents to take note that he’d come back to tie the season standings at 4-4-4.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

A crazy night of milestones for the Nats and the presidents

Was it the moon?

The beautiful bright moon that hovered over the Nationals Park scoreboard wasn’t officially full, but what other explanation could there be for the 4 1/2-hour spectacle that unfolded Thursday night.

The night that had it all started with an awesome display by one young superstar-to-be and ended with a burst bubble about another.

In between, the game that saw 43 players pound out 30 hits over 13 innings was overflowing with personal drama.

Take your pick: Jordan Zimmerman’s return from Tommy John surgery, the roughing up of St. Louis Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter, Albert Pujols hitting his 400th career home run, then twisting his ankle in extra innings, Drew Storen blowing his first save, Roger Bernadina hitting his first home run at Nationals Park to tie the game in the 9th, Ian Desmond’s walk-off RBI in the 13th inning…

As if on queue, the Nationals racing presidents were prepared to match the drama step by step with a few oddities and milestones of their own.

In his 4th appearance this season, Teddy Roosevelt’s longtime nemesis “That Cat” appeared along the first baseline, dancing about in front of the stands during the 4th-inning presidents race.

Teddy jumped out to a big lead in the race, but when he spotted the panther, he veered off course to pummel him into the stands.

Thomas Jefferson took the tape.

As the game advanced into the night and the crowd thinned, the Bull Moose took to the stands to entertain the crowd.

In the 12th inning, Teddy parked in centerfield section 101, posing for photos with fans. When he was still there at the top of the 13th, we knew trouble was in store.

For the seventh time in presidents race history, the Nationals took a home game into the 13th inning, leading to that rare treat for presidents race fans:
a second official race of the night.

Apparently Teddy didn’t get the memo.

When Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln burst out of the centerfield starting gate, Teddy was still hanging out with fans in the stands. He jumped up from his seat and raced around the concourse, but didn’t make it to the field in time to compete.

In another milestone, George, Tom,
and Abe crossed the finish line in a dead heat. The race was too close to
call, and Screech awarded a first-ever
presidents race tie to Tom and Abe.

Here are two great videos courtesy of YouTube member lfahome, including a great capture of Teddy’s encounter with That Cat!

That Cat, grounds crew create presidents race chaos

How do you follow up on what was arguably the most electric night in team history?

The day after a sellout crowd was mesmerized by Stephen Strasburg’s debut, and Teddy barely missed making a little history of his own, the Nationals racing presidents answered that question by throwing out everything but the proverbial kitchen sink.

Wednesday’s 4th-inning presidents race looked at first like a repeat of the night before.  The “un-racing sausages” joined Pittsburgh’s racing pierogies in a crowded field, and held a lead over the presidents into the final turn.

On this night, however, the critter waiting in ambush was none other than long-time presidential nemesis “That Cat,” who had recruited the Nationals Park grounds crew to the cause.  They stormed onto the field, taking down all of the visiting mascots, and leaving Thomas Jefferson with a clear path to victory.

Video courtesy of YouTube member theteddyroosevelt

“That Cat” adds to a night of Nationals Park oddities

On a night that featured both a triple play and an inside-the-park home run, oddities seemed to be the order of the day on Wednesday as the Nats returned to Nationals Park to kick off a homestand vs. the New York Mets.

That Cat tackles Abe Lincoln, photo by Tom BridgeOff the field, TV chef and cookbook author Paula Deen offered to cook Nationals mascot Screech before throwing out the first pitch, and the racing presidents ran a rare relay race; but fans of the presidents know that when it’s time to kick things up a notch in the oddities department, nothing tops an appearance by “That Cat”.

The man-sized panther, who last appeared during an exhibition game in April, showed up to once again disrupt the presidents’ rhythm, this time as Abe Lincoln & Teddy Roosevelt formed a relay team vs. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.

In the 4th-inning race, Teddy started out strong and handed the lead to Lincoln, running anchor. Abe looked like a sure winner, but he was ambushed by That Cat, who lept from the stands along the first base line to make a flying tackle.

George, running anchor for Tom, high-stepped to an easy victory.

Photos by flickr member tbridge.

Nats lose. Teddy disqualified. Good thing this was an exhibition.

A huge crowd filled Nationals Park for this afternoon’s game between the Washington Nationals and Boston Red Sox. The year’s only exhibition game in DC was meant to be a final warm-up for the season that starts Monday. Nats fans were simply grateful that this one didn’t count.

With Craig Stammen spotting Boston an early lead, and Tim Wakefield shutting down the Nats on the field, the faithful looked to the 4th-inning presidents race for signs that 2010 would be different.

Instead, what transpired suggested that the conspiracy that continues to deny Teddy Roosevelt his first presidents race victory is alive and well.

Teddy had raced out to an early lead over the other presidents when That Cat, who has foiled Teddy numerous times in the past, appeared from the centerfield fence. Chasing down the presidents, the Cat tackled Abe, Tom, and George in succession, but ran into a stiff-arm from Teddy Roosevelt.

Teddy held off That Cat, pushing him to the ground just before crossing the finish line, but Screech stepped in and immediately disqualified Teddy for “unnecessary roughness.” For the first time ever, That Cat was declared the presidents race winner.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Teddy is disqualified for “Unauthorized Use of a Feline”

It was a beautiful night at Nationals Park, with a game time temperature of 73 degrees and a crowd of 17,153 on hand to watch a classic pitchers’ duel between the Nationals’ John Lannan and the Philadelphia Phillies’ Pedro Martinez.

With the Nationals up 1-0 in the 4th inning and Lannan cruising through the World Champions’ batting order, it seemed the only thing that could make the night better would be a victory for Teddy Roosevelt.

That CatTeddy tried a little too hard.

As George Washington sprinted out to an early presidents race lead, Teddy recruited his onetime nemesis That
Cat
to join the race.

The now-familiar panther slammed
Abe Lincoln into the outfield wall, then
chased down George Washington and knocked him to the ground, before finally putting the block on Thomas Jefferson, leaving Teddy Roosevelt with an uncontested path to the finish line.

A biased Nationals Park crowd cheered Teddy’s apparent victory, but Screech quickly stepped in to issue the disqualification for “Illegal Use of a Feline.”

Contacted after the race, Screech responded “”Teddy brought that cat with him onto the field, it was an unfair advantage, he told that cat to tackle George Tom and Abe!! Cheating = DISQUALIFIED!””

Abe quickly got up off the ground to cross the tape and steal Teddy’s thunder, leading us to ask whether judge Screech and racing president Abe are in cahoots. After all, Abe has been known to cheat from time to time, but when was the last time he was disqualified?

And the in-game play-by-play:

Video by YouTube members lfahome and TheTeddyRoosevelt.
Finish line photo by Flickr member melanie.phung

Pittsburgh’s Racing Pierogies run into trouble at Nationals Park

Mascots were coming out of the woodwork tonight at Nationals Park as the Pittsburgh Pirates rolled into town for a 4-game series. Just as they did last season, the Pirates brought the giant racing pierogies from PNC Park’s Great Pierogie Race.

The racing pierogies joined tonight’s 4th-inning presidents race and nearly stole the victory from the Nationals’ own presidents; but with Cheese Chester and Oliver Onion in the lead, Teddy’s nemesis That Cat appeared and clotheslined them both, allowing Abe Lincoln to take the victory.

Video courtesy of Charles Diaz

Teddy plays the spoiler on opening day at Nationals Park

The largest crowd in Nationals Park history showed up today to witness an opening day game that was filled with promise, but was ultimately jinxed both on and off the field.

On the field, some fine performances by the young Nationals roster were eclipsed by dropped balls, errant throws, and hit batsmen, leading ultimately to a 9-8 loss at the hands of the world champion Philadelphia Phillies.

Meanwhile, Teddy Roosevelt fans who eagerly anticipated the 4th inning President’s Race were dissapointed when Thomas Jefferson emerged alone from the center field gate to grab a big lead from the start.

Opening day presidents race - Teddy waits in the stands for Thomas JeffersonWhen Abe Lincoln and George Washington followed him out, several paces behind, the question on everyone’s mind became “Where the heck is Teddy?”

The answer came after Jefferson turned the outfield corner, where Teddy was waiting for him in the stands along the 1st base line. Jefferson paused, and Teddy presented him with a bouquet of red balloons in honor of Jefferson’s 266th birthday (who knew?).

That Cat tackles Thomas Jefferson during the opening day presidents race at Nationals ParkThat’s when “That Cat” emerged from behind Teddy, jumped from the stands, and tackled Tom.

Lincoln and Washington ran past him, with Abe easily taking the tape for the first official presidents race victory of 2009.

Teddy never got out of the stands.

That Cat is no stranger to the Nationals presidents race, having first interfered last season, when he attacked Teddy in April and again in June.

Could it be that the panther has joined forces with Teddy to undermine the other presidents? Has Teddy given up on winning to simply play the spoiler? If the reaction of fans around me was any indication, this would not be a popular move. The fans want a clean race. They want to see Teddy get a shot at victory in 2009!

The 2009 season is underway.

Photos courtesy of Flickr user afagen and Luis Albisu

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