Nationals

Quick Links

Trea Turner surprised a Make-A-Wish kid and his reaction was pure joy

Trea Turner surprised a Make-A-Wish kid and his reaction was pure joy

The Make-A-Wish foundation granted the wish of 7-year-old Nationals fan Drew Snapkoski, sending him and his family down to spring training in West Palm Beach.

Drew has battled leukemia for two years, undergoing chemotherapy and persevering through a series of challenges that few people ever have to face—never mind someone as young as him.

But Drew has gotten through it all with the help of his favorite player: Trea Turner. The Nationals’ shortstop and Drew have met before, but that hasn’t stopped Drew from bursting with excitement when he sees him.

Before throwing out the first pitch for the Nationals’ spring training game against the Detroit Tigers on Sunday, Drew was surprised by Turner on the field.

Of course, every pitcher needs a few warmup tosses. Turner was happy to help Drew get his arm loose before his pitch.

The fight isn’t over for Drew just yet, but it’s clear Make-A-Wish gave him the memories of a lifetime by helping him get to spring training.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS:

Quick Links

How Stephen Strasburg changed his narrative in one postseason run

How Stephen Strasburg changed his narrative in one postseason run

When Stephen Strasburg entered the 2019 season, he had a reputation of fragility and, as a result, unavailability when it came to the playoffs.

The former No. 1 overall pick had missed two of the four playoff series the Nationals had appeared in since drafting him as one of the most hyped pitching prospects in a generation. While he had certainly shown more than a few flashes of the potential Washington saw in him, there were few instances when he was able to put it all together and stay on the field in time for the postseason.

That all changed last October, when Strasburg led the National League in innings (209) and placed fifth in NL Cy Young voting before cruising through the playoffs to the tune of a 5-0 record with a 1.98 ERA and 47 strikeouts across 36 1/3 innings. He also took World Series MVP honors, highlighted by a Game 6 near-complete game, as the Nationals claimed D.C.’s first baseball championship since 1924.

Now, Strasburg didn’t touch his career high in innings (215 in 2014) nor did he claim his best finish for the Cy Young award (placed third in 2017). He even once struck out 12 Chicago Cubs over seven scoreless innings to stave off elimination in the 2017 NLDS while battling the flu.

The signs were all there, but Strasburg’s historic playoff run changed the narrative around his career and cemented him as one of the premiere playoff pitchers in all of baseball.

USA TODAY baseball columnist Bob Nightengale joined NBC Sports Washington’s Todd Dybas, Nick Ashooh and Chase Hughes on Wednesday's episode of the Nationals Talk podcast and weighed in on how Strasburg improved his reputation on a national scale.

“I think [he has] just the warrior mentality now—taking the ball, winning big games, a clutch performer,” Nightengale said. “I think that with the Nationals’ World Series run, I think it benefit his reputation more than anybody else. [He’s now] seen as a tough guy. He’s probably always been that way but I don’t think he had that perception from peers, fans, media, that sort of thing.”

LISTEN TO THE FULL INTERVIEW ON THE NATIONALS TALK PODCAST

Before the year began, critics were skeptical that Strasburg would exercise the first of the two player options in his contract to remain in D.C. rather than test free agency. Fresh off parading down Constitution Avenue, he opted out of that deal and scored a new one: seven years and $245 million, giving him the largest contract in Nationals history.

Of course, there are still plenty of questions surrounding Strasburg’s ability to remain healthy and productive all the way through his age-37 season (the final year of his contract). Prior to 2019, he was on a streak of four straight seasons with fewer than 30 starts and 200 innings—and only once in that span did he eclipse 25 starts and 150 innings.

But with a World Series MVP award on his resume, there’s now no question the Strasburg can perform in the playoffs even after handling a significant workload during the regular season.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS:

Quick Links

How one DC bar is applying Nationals manager Davey Martinez's 'go 1-0 everyday' mantra to reopening

How one DC bar is applying Nationals manager Davey Martinez's 'go 1-0 everyday' mantra to reopening

When the Nationals sat at a disastrous 19-31 in 2019 and all hope seemed lost, Davey Martinez didn't panic. Instead, Washington's manager challenged the team to just try and win each day, go 1-0. The mentality worked pretty well as 12 games below .500 turned into a World Series championship.

Attacking every day with that attitude isn't just something that works in sports, and in the current times of the coronavirus pandemic, success can come from just trying to go 1-0. That's exactly what Walters Sports Bar, in Washington, is doing as it reopens to the public.

Walters is located right near Nationals Park, and it looks like they have taken notes on how the Nationals made the best out of a tough time filled with challenges. As every day presents something new, and much is uncertain, the bar is focused on just going 1-0 each day. 

The Nationals' 2019 run showed many that things can always get better by controlling only what you can control. As the community around Walters now faces adversity of its own, it looks like it is drawing inspiration from the world champions themselves.

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE NATIONALS TALK PODCAST

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE NATIONALS NEWS: