Tonight, it was announced that the very troubled Montreal Expos would move to Washington DC beginning next season in RFK Stadium. I expect this will be well-received, as Washington has wanted a team for a long time, and after 33 years, it’s gonna happen.
When I was collecting baseball cards back around 1974, there was talk of moving the Padres from San Diego to Washington… so much so that Topps even issued the Padres cards as both the Padres and Washington “Nat’l League”. I’m sure there have been other close calls over the last three decades, too.
I’m sure there are folks that say that having the Orioles in the neighborhood will make for some good rivalries with the new Washington team. That may be true, although I don’t sense that same to be true for the Dodgers and Angels, Devil Rays and Marlins, Astros and Rangers or Giants and A’s. Seems like the cross-town rivalries are just stronger.
Myself, I would’ve preferred seeing them move to San Juan. Given the impact of Caribbean players on the sport, it seems fitting for them to have a team to root for. Of course, road trips to/from the west coast would be horrible!
So, what to call the new team? That, I’m sure, will be an interesting question. The Rangers still own the rights to the “Washington Senators” name, so that’s probably out. The Washington Filibusters? 🙂