The Nationals Visit The Board Of Trade
The Greater Washington Board of Trade hosted its seventh annual "Welcome Back Washington Nationals" celebration this week, a tradition of some of the region's business leaders welcoming every single member of the Washington Nationals, from the players, like reigning MVP Bryce Harper, snapped with Rosie-Allen Herring of the United Way...
...to the owners, with Ted Lerner and his wife, Annette, making an appearance.
More than 100 visitors got to spend time schmoozing with some of the most talented athletes on earth. That's reliever Blake Treinen in the foreground—the day after he pitched for the third straight game, bedeviling the Atlanta Braves with his wicked sinker—and closer Jonathan Papelbon behind him.
The backup outfielders stuck together. Snapped: Michael A. Taylor, currently in center field and batting leadoff while Ben Revere recovers from injury, Chris Heisey and Matt den Dekker.
After mingling in the foyer, the players spread out among the tables to sit, mingle and converse. Ace starting pitcher Max Scherzer, for example, is a great listener.
Before lunch was served, a Washington Post columnist, and one of the world's biggest baseball fans, George Will said a few words, including nuggets of trivia and tidbits of baseball history.
Did you know the seventh inning stretch started when president William Howard Taft, known as both a baseball fan and a rather rotund man, got up to stretch late in a Washington Senators because the seats were too small? Apparently, George said, everyone in the crowd thought he was leaving, and stood up along with him as a sign of respect. And so the seventh inning stretch was born.
After George spoke, Mark Lerner took the podium and told stories about the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation, the Lerner family's charity through the team that supports children and teenagers in the DC area.
In fact, just a week ago, the foundation opened Ryan Zimmerman Field, a new, turf, multi-purpose field at South Capitol Street and I Street SW, just a few blocks from Nationals Park. Ryan looked on—that's second baseman Daniel Murphy in the background—as Mark narrated a video of the field's dedication. The field is a reminder of the legacy Ryan has left in this area: he's the longest-tenured athlete in DC and he was the first-ever draft pick the Nationals made.
The event wrapped up when pitcher Joe Ross, Daniel Murphy, new manager Dusty Baker and Greater Washington Board of Trade president/CEO Jim Dinegar had a roundtable discussion about the state of the now 7-1 team. The Nationals are 2-0 since they had lunch with BoT. Coincidence?