The Washington Nationals are expected to make a splash on Sunday with the introduction of a new racing president for 2016, Herbert Hoover. The 31st president will be revealed on national television by noted Nationals fan Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press.
In mid-season 2015, the Nationals introduced a sixth racing president in the form of Calvin Coolidge, but judging by all of the “where’s Calvin” questions we got yesterday on opening day, many Nats fans didn’t realize that Silent Cal was a “visiting” racing president sponsored by the White House Historical Society, which was promoting the 30th president throughout 2015 and on it’s annual Christmas ornament.
Two months ago, Nationals Chief Marketing and Revenue Officer Valerie Camillo confirmed at a Hot Stove event for season planholders that we would see another visiting president at some point in 2016. Given that the White House Historical Society is promoting Herbert Hoover in 2016, the only question was when the great humanitarian would make his appearance.
Now, thanks to alert blogger Patrick Reddington at Federal Baseball , we have the answer. Reddington caught this announcement by Chuck Todd this evening on NBC:
“This Sunday on Meet the Press I’ll have an exclusive interview with a former president of the United States who has found his way back to Washington for a new role at Nationals Park,” Chuck announced. “Who is it? What will he be doing? We will reveal on Sunday morning. I can tell you this: It is this former president’s third appearance on Meet the Press.”
Of course, no living president has been on Meet the Press only twice, but Herbert Hoover did appear exactly that many times: once in 1955, 22 years after leaving office, and again nearly four years later, on his 85th birthday, when he made a statement about the coming visit of Soviet Premier Nikita Khruschev. You can listen to the appearance here.
It seems certain that racing president Hoover (Herb? Herbie?) will make his Nationals Park debut later at Sunday’s game vs. the Miami Marlins. The Nationals featured the following tidbit in their promotional release about the current homestand: “Racing Presidents Surprise: The Racing Presidents will introduce a special guest during their race on April 10!”
For what it’s worth, Hoover is a much-misunderstood president who took much of the blame for the great depression, since the Wall Street crash of 1929 took place less than eight months after he took office. Nats fans should expect to learn a bit more about the engineer and humanitarian as the season progresses.