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Matt Williams Owes Everyone Babe Ruth Impression if Nats Win 10th Straight

by Chris Lingebach
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Kevin Frandsen, probably laughing as Matt Williams realizes he may have to publicly embarrass himself with a Babe Ruth impression, if his Nationals win their 10th straight. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Kevin Frandsen, probably laughing as Matt Williams realizes he may have to publicly embarrass himself with a Babe Ruth impression, if his Nationals win their 10th straight. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – The Washington Nationals won their ninth straight game Wednesday night, meaning they’re one win away from manager Matt Williams dusting off his Babe Ruth impression for all to see.

Explanation forthcoming, but first, here’s how the Nationals earned earned their ninth consecutive Curly W, and fourth walk-off in five nights, with the Nats and D-backs tied 2-2 heading into the bottom of the ninth.

And since this streak is so special — the Nationals have only won 10 straight (which they have a chance to replicate tonight) one other time in team history, in 2005 — let’s go ahead and let the Nationals tell the story.

Bask in the glory of their greatness.

Now, about that Babe Ruth impression …

As the Nationals 2014 season was getting underway, a video surfaced of Williams, dating back to 1991 — when he was the regular third baseman for the San Francisco Giants — of the now-Nats manager showing off his Ruth impression for local television crews.

See, Williams was a fierce player, who didn’t mind getting in the face of Barry Bonds when he felt it was warranted. But he also had a lighter side, a funny side, which included impressions of former baseball greats, something he’d become renowned for in the Giants locker room.

James Wagner explains in The Post in April:

Williams’s most memorable impression was that of Ruth. While the team was on the field for batting practice on June 23, 1991, for a game against the Chicago Cubs at Candlestick Park, local television cameramen asked Williams to do his Ruth impression to air during the game broadcast. It was also a turn-back-the-clock game, and the Giants were wearing the old New York Giants uniforms. It was only fitting that Williams re-enact Ruth. “I was young,” he said recently with a smile.

The video is here.

Fast back to more current times, back in April, when Nationals television color analyst F.P. Santangelo had the wherewithal, in an early-season interview, to challenge Williams to revive the Ruth impression — in which he tucks a pillow under his jersey and trots around the bases, channeling a jolly Ol’ Ruth — should the Nationals win 10 straight games at any point in 2014.

Dan Kolko chronicles the terms of challenge, which, oh by the way, include the impression being done on camera.

Williams agreed, despite the fact that, as he told reporters later on, the last time that he did the impersonation was when that video footage was taken, which was all the way back in 1991.

Williams agreed, and two nights ago, minutes after the Nationals extended their lead to eight games with an 8-1 win over the D-backs, he was asked by a reporter if his early-season agreement was still on the table.

“Well, I didn’t necessarily want to bring that up, but it is,” Williams smiled. “Yes, it is. It’s still available.”

If you’re a Nationals fan, you should never root harder for the Nationals than you do tonight as Gio Gonzalez takes the hill at Nats Park, with Washington looking for their 10th straight victory.

If you’re not a Nationals fan, you should never root harder for the Nationals than you do tonight as Gio Gonzalez takes the hill at Nats Park, with Washington looking for their 10th straight victory.

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