No billy goat or ‘Bambino’ but Washingtonians wonder if baseball team is jinxed – Baltimore Sun
In the early hours of Friday the 13th in the 13th season of the Nationals in Washington, you could hardly blame even the team’s most sensible fans for wondering if something had gone cosmically awry with a club that has mastered the art of merely getting close.
Unlike some other cities, Washington has no cute anecdotes about baseball jinxes – no “Curse of the Bambino,” no billy goats said to be causing its baseball team to chronically underachieve when it matters most.
Fans at Washington’s 9-8 season-ending divisional round playoff loss to the Chicago Cubs on Thursday night did say there is a man who habitually sacrifices rubber chickens during losing streaks. “He cuts their heads off. He seems like a nice guy though,” said Nationals fan Keith Zukowski of Falls Church, Va.
But a jinx?
“I think it’s overblown a little bit, but it causes D.C. fans to be apprehensive,” said Grant Daniels of Lorton, Va. “If this happens again four or five more times, we’ll get there.”
Cursed or not, Washington now has a run of 93 years without winning a postseason baseball series. The city hasn’t only lost baseball games, it has lost teams – twice (to Minnesota and Texas). The Nationals, who arrived from Montreal in 2005 after the nation’s capital went 33 years without a team, were eliminated in the first playoff round in 2012, 2014, 2016 and this year.
Three of the four elimination games – most memorably the one in 2012 when Washington lost a six-run lead – have come at Nationals Park.
Washington was twice a strike away from victory in the 2012 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.
That game seems to stick with the city like August humidity.
“I still feel how I felt at the end of that