Monday, September 10, 2012

I feel myself becoming a Nationals fan

I don't have a lot of special Washington Nationals cards. Just a handful. But when I pull one, I notice it more than when I'm pulling one of another team, because I immediately think, "Geez, I'm stuck with this thing."

With most teams, I can find a team collector and flip it for a Dodger. But not with the Nationals. I don't have a Nationals card connection anymore.

So the Nationals cards simply accumulate like a backed-up sink. Indeed, it does get a little messy because if anyone were to stumble across my card collection, they might say, "what, are you a Nationals fan or something?"

It's embarrassing.

But if simply owning a semi-decent assortment of parallels of a particular team was a reason to be a fan, I would have become a diehard Oakland A's follower a long time ago.

No, there's more than that to my gradual admiration for the Nationals.

One is that their Triple A team is closer to where I live than any other team, and I get a chance to learn about the organization a little more than I can about the young prospects on other teams.

Another reason is that they are in the National League East, a division that is pretty much filled with teams I dislike -- and have disliked for a long, long, long time. Since before some of you were born.

I am legally required to root for one team per division. It's written down somewhere in some courthouse. And now that I've soured on the Phillies, and they're not going anywhere anyway, that doesn't leave much left. I can't possibly root for the Braves or Mets. The Marlins are done and were pretty stupid all year.

That leaves the Nationals.

And, the final reason in their favor is that they're a young and interesting team that features a combination of sharp, impressive pitchers, and breakout hitters.

I suppose that makes me a bandwagoner. But it's not like I'm ditching the Dodgers or anything. It only means you're probably going to see the Nationals make a huge jump when I update my Top 30 teams in a few months.

You've got to have teams to support in the playoffs -- you know, as a back-up -- and why not a team where I KNOW the cards are staying with me?

The truth is I don't really have many more nice Nationals cards than the few you see here. And after pulling two black-bordered Heritage Nationals and one refractor Heritage National this year, only shiny Espinosa is left. So, I can get the trades done. I just can't move the cards as quickly as a lot of other teams.

I'm hoping at least a few Nationals cards will stay with me through the playoffs. I can set them up on my TV set so they can send out winning vibes to their team as they play whatever hated National League club is opposing them (Dodgers excluded, of course). Why, if they end up facing the Giants, I might buy an entire Nationals uniform and wear it as they face that sickening collection of Scrappy-Doos.

GO NATS!!!!!!


  1. I live in Virginia, so Nats games are on TV every day. I find myself watching more and more of them. Since I don't really have a favorite team, they are becoming mine just by availability. I've even considered starting to collect Nats, but I haven't committed yet.

  2. Last year I went to a bunch of Potomac Nationals games (Single-A affiliate) got a bunch of autographs and have been pulling for these guys as they rise through the ranks. And my sons have fallen prey to all the Nats hype. I'll admit, it is fun to watch winning baseball but announcer FP Santangelo has gotten soooo annoying lately. I know a lot of announcers are "homers" but this is the first season the Nats have had a winning record and he acts like their "S" don't stink. Especially during the bench clearing episodes last week.

    Sour Cubs fan grapes? Maybe. But it started way before last week's series. I'll mute the TV and listen to the radio broadcast. And with RG3's performance yesterday, even the Nats first playoff appearance will fall by the wayside in this area.

  3. I experienced Santangelo on the MLB Network for the first time a month or so ago. I wanted to mute him 10 minutes into listening to him!

  4. Interesting. As an Orioles fan I think I'm supposed to hate the Nats. But I'm so far removed from Charm City that I can't work up the animosity. Instead I, like you, find myself rooting for them. Reason being the association they've had with Frank Robinson and now Davey Johnson.

  5. I'm a Nats "fan" for basically the same reasons (except for living near their minor league team). The Orioles fall into that category for the same reason, so it's cool that they're both doing well this season. Still, I'd be pretty hard pressed to name their starting nine, much less any of their bench/bullpen guys.

  6. I think I'm supposed to hate the Nats because I'm an Oriole fan. It used to be that way with the Colts/Redskins back in the day. But being far removed from Charm City I've lost some sense of rivalries.

    So I find myself rooting for the Nats because of the involvement Frank Robinson and now Davey Johnson have with the club. I hope they do well in the post-season.