It's a long ass article, so buckle up. Definitely worth the read.
Gary Majewski, relief pitcher: “The majority of the team came from Montreal, and it was like, we have no fans. Then all of the sudden, it’s pretty much packed and these fans are actually pulling for you.”
Ryan Church: “There were days where you’d hit a home run or something, you’d come back to the dugout and look up in the stands and everybody’s jumping. The whole thing is moving. It was like, ‘Holy crap—this is crazy!’ ”
Jim Bowden, Nationals general manager: “We had our first draft in June. The whole idea there was we wanted to get the face of the franchise. We had the fourth pick, and we thought, ‘How can we get a local kid? Who can be that guy to represent what we wanted Washington to be represented by baseball-wise and in the community?’ And Ryan Zimmerman fit all of that.”
Ryan Zimmerman, third baseman: “I was in my parents’ house in Sandbridge, Virginia. The draft wasn’t televised like it is now—you basically kind of listened to it on a computer. I was not very highly recruited out of high school. I have the September birthday, but my parents used it the other way: to get me to school quicker so they could get me out of the house. So physically, I was a year behind everyone else. It was sort of a surreal moment. Growing up in the Virginia Beach area, going to the University of Virginia, and then getting drafted by the closest team possible to where I grew up, it was ideal.”