Washington Nationals: Who Wears The “Curly W” First In HOF?

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MLB: Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals
MLB: Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals /


The first player drafted by the Washington Nationals in 2005, Ryan Zimmerman has earned a place among the legends of Washington sports.

Although his name will eventually join John Riggins and Elvin Hayes in the ring of honor, Cooperstown is probably not in the cards for him.

Still, the man known as “Mr. Walk-Off” is the first true impact player in Nationals history. When they arrived from Montreal, a ward of Major League Baseball, no one know how the city would adopt their new team. Thanks to Zimmerman, they grew to love the team.

Injuries grabbed away his chance at Cooperstown, but in 1,408 games with Washington, his 1505 hits and 215 home runs are records since the team moved south. A second-place finish in the 2006 NL Rookie of the Year vote gave him and the team national credibility. His 2009 Gold Glove and 33 homers gave fans reasons to hope.

Since then, he played in all three Washington postseason appearances, hitting .357 in 14 games, including a .353 performance last year.

Sure, there are better players now. Zimmerman still is the face of the franchise. His ability to shine when healthy helped ease the awkward transition from the orphaned Expos to your Nationals.

When this version of Washington’s baseball history is celebrated, Zimmerman’s name will top the list.