Video: Taft notches his first-ever presidents race victory, beating Teddy at the wire

Racing Presidents Abe Attacks JeffersonRacing Presidents Teddy Attacks GeorgeNationals Racing Presidents William Howard Taft First VictoryThe recent spate of violence and cheating in the Nationals’ presidents race escalated Saturday afternoon at Nationals Park as Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and George Washington all got into the act.

Thomas Jefferson took an early lead, but Abe Lincoln put a quick end to that by head butting the Sage of Monticello on the warning track.

Standings leader George Washington quickly got back at “Honest” Abe, slamming him into the right field wall and knocking him out of the race.

Season-long losers Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft were hot on Washington’s trail, and as they reached the home stretch, Teddy grabbed Washington from behind and knocked him out, ensuring that one winless president would notch his first victory of the season.

In the second photo finish in as many days, it was newcomer William Howard Taft who leaned forward to break the tape and win his first-ever presidents race at Nationals Park.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Seamheads.com & SABRmetrics expert says dump Taft, Let Teddy Win

The folks over at Seamheads.com know a thing or two about baseball, having authored 90 books about the subject. So the Washington Nationals might do well to pay attention when Seamheads managing editor, baseball author, longtime MASN contributor and SABRmetrics expert Ted Leavengood offers some advice for getting the season on track.

Seamheads Ted LeavengoodOn Thursday at Seamheads.com, Leavengood makes the case that the Nats messed up their juju by introducing new racing president William Howard Taft for the 2013 season, while turning Teddy Roosevelt into a perpetual loser once again.

“What must be accepted,” Leavengood writes, “is that the Natinals (sic) have violated the first rule of Juju. You don’t change the narrative when your team is winning.”

Citing The Juju Rules by Hart Seely, Leavengood argues that the prescription is simple. “The first step must be to have Teddy win again. He must win by running directly over William Howard Taft. That may be enough, but if not then Taft must be shipped out to Syracuse. The Nationals need to get down to the business at hand and it is all about Teddy.”

You can find some of Leavengood’s books on Washington baseball here.

Video: Washington gets his revenge on WH Taft

Racing president William Howard Taft hits the ground 4-4-2014Racing president William Howard Taft hits the ground 4-4-2014After William Howard Taft tried to knock out the competition during his debut presidents race on opening day, George Washington decided to send a message.

On Wednesday night at Nationals Park, Taft raced out of the gate to take a big lead, but the father of our country sat out to wait in ambush along the first base line.

After turning back to taunt the other presidents, Taft ran into a wall of Washington and hit the ground, allowing a trailing Thomas Jefferson to take the tape.

Meanwhile, Teddy is off to an 0-2 start for the seventh time.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Video: Winthrop Roosevelt no help as William Howard Taft pushes Teddy around in his debut race

Winthrop Roosevelt at Nationals ParkWilliam Howard Taft Tackles Abe LincolnPresidents Race William Howard Taft Tackles Teddy RooseveltWilliam Howard Taft Tackles Teddy RooseveltWinthrop Roosevelt was on hand to cheer on his great-great grandfather for the opening day presidents race at Nationals Park, but the Nats’ newest racing president established himself as an enforcer who was prepared to put himself between Teddy and the finish line.

The direct descendent of Theodore Roosevelt ushered in the 2013 season with a shout of “Play Ball” before the first pitch, drawing cheers from the record opening day crowd despite the Nats’ unfortunate misspelling of his name on the HD scoreboard (it read “Wintrhop”).

A Bryce Harper first-pitch home run and 4 nearly-perfect Stephen Strasburg-pitched innings later, the Nationals’ new racing president William Howard Taft (the Nats plan to call him “Bill”) made his presidents race debut.

Winthrop Roosevelt was recruited to hold the presidents race finish line and cheered loudly for his namesake, but Taft established his new role quickly, shoving Abraham Lincoln to the ground as they ran along the outfield warning track.

After Jefferson tripped on the fallen Lincoln, Taft chased down Roosevelt, slamming him into the right field wall before both fell to the ground.

With George Washington crossing the finish line alone, Bill and Teddy rose to their feet and got into a shoving match in the foul territory below section 133.

The Nationals are clearly out to establish Taft as the presidents race villain and new nemesis for Teddy Roosevelt. Who knows where this will lead, but those who thought Teddy’s brief playoff winning streak would carry into the new season were sorely disappointed.

More photos and observations from opening day 2013 to follow.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Taft skips first presidents race of 2013, Gecko flattens Washington

New racing president William Howard Taft sat out the first presidents race of 2013 at Nationals Park.

Taft sits out first presidents raceThe unofficial race was part of Friday’s exhibition opener vs. the New York Yankees. Taft wasn’t part of the introductory video, and spent the entire race in the stands at section 133, taking notes on his new opponents in preparation for Monday’s official opener.

The race was otherwise reminiscent of previous seasons, with Teddy Roosevelt trailing far behind Abe Lincoln at the tape. George Washington tried to take out his frustrations on the sponsor GEICO Gecko, who was ready for George and flattened him.

Video courtesy of YouTube member lfahome

Taft Gains on Teddy in race to Mt. Rushmore

Racing president Teddy Roosevelt reaches IllinoisRacing President William Howard Taft reaches IllinoisRacing president William Howard Taft gained ground on Teddy Roosevelt late Friday evening as they both crossed the Illinois line after just one day of their race to Mt. Rushmore.

The Big Chief followed Teddy in tweeting from the border just before sunset, nearly 700 miles from the day’s starting point.

In a Nationals-sponsored Twitter contest, fans have been asked to use the hashtags #VoteBill or #VoteTeddy to show support for either Taft or Roosevelt. Teddy shot out to an early lead, but voting has been light, meaning a Taft comeback isn’t out of the question.

Given that one randomly selected user of each hashtag will win a private mascot appearance with that racing president, a vote for Taft right now is
carrying pretty nice odds.

Teddy takes an early lead in fan voting as race vs. Taft begins

William Howard Taft Racing President departing on adventure to Mt. RushmoreNats Racing presidents Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft took off this morning on their Executive Adventure to Mt. Rushmore, with Taft tweeting a photo from the starting line.

Fans who follow the presidents on Twitter @Teddy26Nats or @NatsBigChief27 are being asked to use the hashtags #VoteTeddy or #VoteBill to voice their support.

Results appear real-time at Nationals.com, and no surprise: in the early hours, support for Teddy is nearly tripling that for Taft.

The race ends Monday at Mt. Rushmore.

%d bloggers like this: