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Remembering the Past as we look forward to the Future
At the beginning of each new baseball season I start to get that feeling that I first got when I was young boy. For me, it is an exuberant feeling that I have for the first couple weeks of the season. This year the feeling is stronger than usual. With the new ballpark and a talented young ball club, it only makes sense that this feeling is getting stronger each day.
As that feeling of exuberance grows I make sure I find time to thank the baseball gods for what they have given to us. For many of you who did not grow up following the 1st or 2nd Washington Senators you may not understand what I am talking about. If you are 45 years old, or older, and grew up in this area you know what I am talking about. When I was a young boy I would look forward to each new season. I could not wait to see Frank Howard, Ed Brinkman, Dick Bosman and the rest of the Senators. I knew our Senators were not going to win the pennant but that didn’t really matter. What did matter is in 1972 we didn’t have the Washington Senators to root for anymore.
This time was a very difficult time for us Washington baseball fans. I went from dissecting every box score to not reading the sports page. My baseball card collection started to be neglected. I would half-heartedly follow the Texas Rangers and the dreaded Baltimore Orioles. Once in awhile it would be reported that another major league team was considering a move to Washington D.C. One of closest moves was in 1974 when it was reported that the San Diego Padres were going to move to the Nation’s Capital. They even made baseball cards with the players in their Padres uniform but the card said Washington NL. As the years went by I found myself rooting for them dreaded Orioles more and the Rangers less.
The main reason I started to follow the Orioles was because of Eddie. You’ve got it Eddie Murray, the coolest blanking baseball player that I ever watched. Another plus was Eddie wore number (33) just like Hondo wore during his last few seasons in Washington. As I would go onto root for the birds for the next twenty plus years I would never have that same feeling that I had with the old Senators.
So ever since 2005 I make sure I find the time to thank the baseball gods for the Washington Nationals. They gave this middle age man part of his childhood back and I say thank you!
Long Live The Nationals.