The Washington Nationals and San Diego Padres, facing off this weekend for a three-game series, are inextricably linked in baseball history.
Both franchises came into the league in 1969 as expansion teams, the Nats starting life as the Montreal Expos and the Padres staying with their current incarnation.
Both teams have enjoyed a modicum of success, without exactly blowing the rest of the league away. Going into Saturday’s game at Nationals Park, the Nats-Spos have a 3389-3689 win-loss record, or .479 percentage, according to Baseball-Reference.com. The Padres are remarkably similar, with a 3285-3804 win-loss record, or .463 percentage.
The Padres have a bit more playoff success to brag about. While the Nats-Spos have two division titles to their name, and a claim to a third, if not for the strike-killing 1994 season. The Padres have five division titles and two pennants.
The 1984 Padres, in particular, are well-known for killing the Chicago Cubs’ pennant dreams, as well as their uniforms’ mind-boggling color scheme of mud-brown and deli-mustard.
It all adds up to an evenly matched pair of teams, sharing a past born in 1969.
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The District of Columbia is a cultural capital where you can you get your kicks from movies projected on the National Mall, lectures on vermouth or Russian avant-garde art. There's always something to do.
Jason Dick is the Hill Life editor for Roll Call and has also worked at Greenwire, CongressDaily and National Journal Daily during his time in Washington. @jasonjdick