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One of the most tedious traditions in D.C. sports might finally be coming to an end.
Regardless of whether the Nationals hold off the charging Atlanta Braves in the NL East, Washington's baseball team will play postseason baseball and finish with at least 93 wins. That's a damn good season, and rumors have started flying that the Nationals will celebrate by finally letting Teddy win a race when the Nats wrap up the regular season with an October 3 home game against Philadelphia.
From U.S. News and World Report (yes, really):
Whispers is hearing that the Nationals, who have already secured a playoff spot, are planning to have Teddy win the Presidents Race in the Nationals final regular season game next Wednesday.
Lara Potter, VP of Communications for the Nationals, coyly says of Teddy's chances: "You never know, anything could happen during the Presidents Race." When asked if the Presidents Race was rigged, Potter was sharper. "That's just something that I'm not going to comment on," she says.
Frankly, the end of this season would be the time to do it for several reasons. First, people are starting to get fed up with the schtick. Second, the timing allows for a feeling of epic, climactic payoff without the distraction of doing it during a playoff game. Third, allowing Teddy to win now would allow the Nationals to frame it as mirroring their rise to adequacy and contention in some small, but satisfactory way. After all, as an English teacher once told us, "it's not the destination, it's the journey."
While we're here, here's the Teddy section of the Nationals website, here's the E:60 piece on this sordid affair here's a statement from President Obama, and here's what you should read after sifting through all that