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Teddy Wins! Washington Nationals Mascot Snaps 525-Game Losing Streak

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Teddy Wins! Washington Nationals Mascot Snaps 525-Game Losing Streak

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Teddy Wins! Washington Nationals Mascot Snaps 525-Game Losing Streak

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AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Finally this hour, we have news from the presidential race.

(SOUNDBITE OF BASEBALL BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER #1: Abe is out first; Tom is second. George is third, and Teddy's last!

CORNISH: Nobody knew today would be the most important day in Washington baseball history.

(SOUNDBITE OF BASEBALL BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER #1: Come on, Teddy! You've got to catch up, buddy!

CORNISH: Sure, the Washington Nationals had already won the National League East Division title earlier this week. The nation's capital will host playoff baseball for the first time in almost 80 years. But what happened at Nationals Park today was just as remarkable.

(SOUNDBITE OF BASEBALL BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER #1: Abe is in the lead. Tom is second. But George is making to a move on the outside!

CORNISH: For seven years, mascot versions of Abe Lincoln, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Teddy Roosevelt - all with massive foam heads - have raced in the fourth inning of every Nationals home game. For seven years, Teddy has found a way to lose. Some days, he was just slow; some days, distracted by a fan. He's even been the victim of attacks by other mascots.

(SOUNDBITE OF ESPN DOCUMENTARY)

TOM DAVIS: He was taken out by a leprechaun. A lobster has taken Teddy out. Last year, Teddy was in the lead, by far. No one was going to stop him; it was going to be the day that Teddy wins the race. And Kool-Aid Man busts out of a wall; just flat, laid out Teddy. And that one pretty much caught everybody off-guard.

CORNISH: That's Nats official Tom Davis, appearing in a recent ESPN documentary about Teddy's long losing streak. Fans, players and Washington media have all lobbied on Teddy's behalf. He's the subject of a popular fan blog, called "Let Teddy Win." Even Sen. John McCain has had enough. Here he is, in that ESPN documentary.

(SOUNDBITE OF ESPN DOCUMENTARY)

SEN. JOHN MCCAIN: One of the truly great presidents in history has never won a race. I am outraged. That's why I'm calling for congressional hearings - to right this horrible wrong.

CORNISH: Well, today, justice was done. Wearing a red headband and gold shoes - like Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt - Teddy was all alone in the home stretch.

(SOUNDBITE OF BASEBALL BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER #2: The winner is going to beeeeeee - Teddy!

(CHEERS)

CORNISH: The stunned crowd roared as Teddy tore open his Nats jersey, and beat his chest in celebration. Meanwhile, the Nationals' TV announcer put everything into perspective.

(SOUNDBITE OF BASEBALL BROADCAST)

UNIDENTIFIED ANNOUNCER #3: It's history. It is history.

CORNISH: Congratulations, Teddy.

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