Video: Chaos reigns as visiting mascots assault racing presidents, Easter Bunny tackles Teddy Roosevelt, and Screech takes the tape

YouDee Nationals presidents raceEaster Presidents Race 01Easter Presidents Race 003Easter Presidents Race 002Two Nationals Park traditions literally collided on Sunday as the Washington Nationals celebrated Screech’s birthday with guest appearances by area mascots, and also celebrated Easter with an appearance by a certain bunny.

Each had a history of interfering with the fourth inning presidents race, but never on the same day. What followed wasn’t pretty.

When the race began, visiting mascots YouDee (University of Delaware), Slapshot (Capitals), Pinch (Maryland Blue Crabs), Bill the Goat (Navy), Talon (DC United), Testudo (University of Maryland), and The Colonial (George Washington University) all gathered along the first base line to greet the racing presidents.

George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy emerged from the centerfield gate wearing bunny ears, and Jefferson pulled ahead early, holding onto his lead until the presidents found themselves facing a sea of mascots in the home stretch.

That’s when Slapshot took a running leap over the back of fellow eagle Talon to nail the sage of Monticello with a head-butt.

Delaware’s YouDee then rammed in George Washington, smashing the father of our country’s face.

Finally Maryland’s Testudo stiff-armed Abe Lincoln, knocking off his ears and sending him to the ground.

The mascots then let Teddy Roosevelt run past, seemingly to secure his first victory of the season.

But alas, that’s when the Easter Bunny appeared from nowhere — or more accurately from the new Dugout Club section — and took down the Bull Moose with a vicious diving tackle.

Screech, repeating a scene from last season, waltzed across the finish line to steal the win.

Teddy, however, remains winless as the Nationals begin their road trip to Atlanta.


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Nats racing presidents return to old ways, robbing Teddy Roosevelt of victory to kick off 2017 season

It was just like old times, and not in a good way.

Teddy Roosevelt tripped Nationals Presidents RaceTeddy Roosevelt Nationals presidents raceTeddy Roosevelt loses presidents raceBaseball’s opening day is known as a time of hope, when records are wiped clean and fans look to the future with optimism.

But in the season’s inaugural presidents race Monday at Nationals Park, it seemed like 2012 all over again.

Nats fans had celebrated on social media when it was announced that recent additions to the race — Taft, Coolidge, and Hoover — had “retired” to the Ballpark of the Palm Beaches, and they got what they were hoping for, as for the first time in five years it was back to the Rushmore Four — George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt.

But there was an unexpected extra dose of d√©j√† vu for Teddy Roosevelt fans, as the other presidents conspired to rob Teddy of the victory, and revived memories of The Bull Moose’s historic 526-race losing streak.

Teddy had the lead in the home stretch, but Washington and Jefferson pushed him from behind, celebrating with a high five as Abe raced by for the win.

In another nod to the old days, it appears that the presidents race champions belt has been retired. Rather than being awarded a belt, Lincoln simply carried the checkered flag off the field.

Video for LetTeddyWin.com by lfahome

Video: Jefferson slams Teddy Roosevelt into the stands as Nationals attempt to quell curse talk

thomas-jefferson-playoff-presidents-racethomas-jefferson-nats-playoff-presidents-race-3thomas-jefferson-shoves-teddy-roosevelt-playoff-presidents-race-3thomas-jefferson-wins-playoffs-presidents-raceThe Nationals can’t seem to win — and not just division series.

Faced with relentless criticism about an alleged curse of Teddy Roosevelt, the team responded by having Teddy win every¬†playoff presidents race from 2012¬†to 2014¬†through last week’s Game 1.

When that didn’t work out so well, they shifted gears and plotted a victory for Thomas Jefferson for Sunday’s Game 2 — which the Nationals won.

So for Thursday night’s decisive Game 5, another elaborate plot had Roosevelt fooling his fellow presidents by running the wrong way, then reversing course and bolting for the finish.

Again, it was Jefferson who caught up from behind, this time plowing into the Bull Moose and knocking Teddy into the stands.

Sadly for Nationals fans, the victories for Jefferson turned out to be as unrelated to the outcome as those historic Roosevelt wins, as the Nationals lost an epic heartbreaker to the Los Angeles Dodgers to end their 2016 season.

It was nonetheless a great showcase game for a team that has come a long way in it’s relatively short tenure in DC. Fans stayed — and stayed on their feet — until nearly 1:00am despite the closure of the Metro an hour earlier. The #NatsRide program, generated entirely by fans the day before the game, was an unqualified success, and a badge of honor for the team’s passionate and supportive fan base.

Some fans (see below) manage to still blame things on Teddy, but here’s hoping we’re finally past that.

Thanks to LetTeddyWin contributor lfahome for another season of great finish line videos:

Video: Secret Service attacks racing presidents on National Teddy Bear Day

national-teddy-bear-day-secret-servicenational-teddy-bear-day-teddy-rooseveltIt’s presumed that the Secret Service is supposed to protect our presidents, but on Friday night at Nationals Park, the Nats’ mascot handlers, who wear “Secret Service” jerseys, conspired with racing president Teddy Roosevelt to take out the competition.

It was National Teddy Bear Day, and so as the race began from center field, Roosevelt appeared from the tunnel below section 134 and could be seen directing his Secret Service Agent Wooddell into the stands in the right field corner, carrying a large Teddy bear.

As the competition hit the home stretch, the secret service agent threw the Teddy bear from the stands and nailed lead runner William Howard Taft in the nose, knocking him over and toppling the others like dominoes.

The Bull Moose picked up the prize Teddy bear and bolted for the finish, then carried the bear around the park for the rest of the night.

teddy-roosevelt-national-teddy-bear-day

Bottom Photo: Luis Albisu

Thomas Jefferson swings a big book on National Read A Book Day

thomas-jefferson-national-read-a-book-day-readingthomas-jefferson-national-read-a-book-dayThomas Jefferson didn’t seem clear on the concept.

Tuesday was National Read A Book Day, and so when the Washington Nationals presidents race began, it stood to reason that the Sage of Monticello, who started the Library of Congress with a donation from his personal library, skipped the race to read a giant book in the first base foul territory.

But as his opponents approached the finish line, Jefferson’s competitive nature got the best of him, and he wielded the book like a weapon to take out his opponents.

UPDATE: As revealed by alert¬†friend @NatsBobbles, who was in section 134, Jefferson was reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Apparently our nation’s third president is about eleven years behind on the boy wizard saga. If you see him on the centerfield concourse, don’t tell him “you know who” is back.

WWE wrestler The Miz shines the belt and temporarily blinds the Nationals racing presidents

Mike The Miz WWE Washington Nationals BeltAbe Lincoln blinded by Mike the MizTeddy Roosevelt passes racing presidentsWWE Wrestler Mike “The Miz” Mizanin is in DC for this weekend’s WWE Battleground at the Verizon Center, and so he paid a visit Friday night to Nationals Park to see the Nats open their home series vs. the San Diego Padres.

The Miz was intrigued by the racing presidents’ wrestling-inspired champions belt, and once he got his hands on it, decided to polish it up for the fourth inning presidents race.

Abe Lincoln and William Howard Taft were battling for the lead as the race entered its home stretch. That’s when The Miz, who’d been sitting in the front row of section 134 rooting for Teddy Roosevelt, decided to turn the newly-polished belt into a weapon, shining it in the direction of the presidents at the front of the pack, and temporarily blinding them.

Lincoln, Taft, Washington, and Jefferson all tried to shield their eyes, but their arms weren’t long enough to reach their giant heads; but Teddy Roosevelt kept his eyes on the finish line, and passed the field to take the tape.


Finish line video for LetTeddyWin.com by lfahome

Video: Racing presidents match team’s 16-inning insanity with 20-mascot melee and a presidents race first

Thomas JeffersonMascots attack JeffersonMascots attach racing presidentsScreech wins Nationals Presidents Race birthday carnageScreech wins Nationals Presidents Race Let Teddy WinSunday’s 16-inning marathon victory by the Nationals over the Minnesota Twins is already ¬†being memorialized as one of the most epic and topsy-turvy games in Nats history, so it’s understandable that the game overshadowed what was also an epic and historic day in the pantheon of presidents races.

It was the annual “Kids Opening Day,” in which the team celebrates mascot Screech’s birthday, and other area mascots often show up to join in the fun.

The turnout Sunday was strong, with mascots from at least thirteen area teams and colleges in attendance, including G-Wiz, Slapshot, Glory, Poe, Uncle Slam, Talon, Testudo, Clawed Z. Eagle, YouDee, Baby Blue, Bulldog Jack, Bill the Goat, True Grit, Winger, and Glory.

In the fourth inning race, Thomas Jefferson emerged first and jumped out to a huge lead, but was met in the right field corner by a relentless onslaught of mascots, who jumped and pummeled him, with Navy mascot Bill the Goat repeatedly kicking the founding father on the ground.

When the other five presidents rounded the corner, the mascots got up and slammed into them all, then turned around and went back after Jefferson, who was body-slammed by Slapshot as he tried to get up.

Presidents race history was then made when Screech, who usually calls the winner from the finish line, took off and raced for the belt himself, marking only the third time a non-president has taken the tape*.

When the game went into the thirteenth inning, it was Jefferson’s chance for redemption. Wearing their traditional “Sunday best” uniforms for the first time this season, Jefferson ran away with the extra-innings win.

Here’s¬†the official video as called at Nats Park, followed by the TV coverage on MASN:


Note: Our usual finish line videographer lfahome was not in attendance, so I tried to shoot the finish line videos myself, and botched the job (for both races!). What he does is not so easy.

* In 2009, Visiting pierogie Cheese Chester went off script and stole a win. In 2011, it was Jayson Werth.

Videos: Washington Nationals, MASN

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