On Saturday, the Washington Nationals will officially introduce William Howard Taft, our country's 27th President, as the fifth member of their infamous Presidents' Race.
He will join George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt in the exclusive fleet-footed club.
The Nationals considered many presidential options, but Taft made the most sense due to his connection to baseball. Taft is credited with having thrown the first ceremonial pitch in history after tossing one in 1910. He is also the unofficial creator of the seventh-inning stretch.
Roosevelt was said to have played a major role in the decision to tab Taft as the newest member of the race.
“Teddy has handpicked the next president for the Presidents’ Race,” Nationals COO Andy Feffer said late Friday. “There was a great amount of banter and discussion back and forth, but Teddy won out with his recommendation.”
Roosevelt made news headlines everywhere when he secured his first-ever victory during the 2012 season. He had previously gone winless in more than 500 attempts since the race's inception in 2006.
Once great allies, he and Taft battled over policy matters following Taft’s ascension to the Presidency in 1912. That led Roosevelt to run as a third-party candidate against the man that had succeeded him as President, ultimately costing both men the chance to return to the Oval Office. It appears as though the two have finally worked things out, although they will once again be competitors when the season season rolls around.
The team will refer to Taft as "Bill" and the "Big Chief" due to his one time role as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
“Not only do I think he’ll be well-received, but he’ll add to the competition,” Feffer said. “Who knows what’ll happen next? He might even give Teddy a run for his money.”
Via DC Sports Blog