On a beautiful, sunny Sunday in September, the last major league baseball game was played at Washington's RFK Stadium (or the "concrete dump" as many news articles mislabeled it). It was a very pleasant, yet bitter-sweet experience for the more-than 40,000 fans that filled the stadium one last time to cheer on the Nats and remember their RFK predecessors, the Senators (some of whom, including the now-legendary Frank (no-not Ryan) Howard, were on-hand for the pre-game ceremonies).
Just three years ago, the stadium, reborn and refurbished, had made it possible to bring back major league baseball to DC (after thirty-plus years of absence, and lonely treks to Baltimore). Now, RFK was being honored and abandoned by MLB one more time. Fortunately and fittingly, the Nationals rose to the occasion to beat the pennant-hungry Phillies (and their ace Cole Hamels) 5 to 3. Appropriately, the win enabled the Nats to finish their three-year, RFK stint with a home record of 122 wins and 121 loses, and to leave the fans with yet one more positive memory of baseball at RFK.
But this time, unlike in 1971, the Nats are just going across town--to a new home, to start a new tradition.