July 6, 2022

Potomac Nationals win 2014 Carolina League title

The Potomac Nationals won the Mills Cup championship on Wednesday night in Woodbridge for the fifth time in their history. Potomac, the Class A Advanced affiliate of the Washington Nationals, beat the Myrtle Beach Pelicans 5-1.

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NATS/P-NATS: Josh Olerud Named 2013 Carolina League Executive of the Year

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Olerud, in Third Season with Potomac Nationals Franchise, Led Club to
an All-Time, Single-Season Attendance Record in 2013

Woodbridge, VA—The Potomac Nationals are proud to announce Vice President/General Manager, Josh Olerud has been named the recipient of the 2013 Calvin Falwell Executive of the Year Award. Voting was conducted by league general managers, club owners, field managers, and the Carolina League president.

“This is a tremendous honor,” said Olerud. “With all the great people we have in the Carolina League, it is very humbling to be recognized. This is a team effort and it is truly the dedication of our ownership group, great front office staff, and first-class game-day team that makes this recognition possible.”

Olerud finished his 10th season in professional baseball in 2013 after eight years as General Manager of the Rockford RiverHawks of the Frontier League and following completion of his third season leading the Potomac Nationals. Originally hailing from Bloomington, MN, he graduated with a degree in Sports Management with an emphasis in Marketing at Minnesota State University at Mankato. Olerud was the most recent recipient of the Pitch and Hit Club of Chicago’s Minor League Executive of the Year in 2012.

Olerud oversaw a 2013 Potomac Nationals campaign that shattered the single-season franchise record for overall attendance at Pfitzner Stadium (236,772). This was the highest attendance mark in a single Nationals’ season since 220,145 fans flocked to The Pfitz in 1998. (Prince William Cannons-St. Louis Cardinals). Olerud presided over eight sellouts at The Pfitz during the 2013 campaign and average per game attendance was 3,534 fans. In addition, the P-Nats’ patriarch led a 2013 front office team that unveiled a record number of fireworks shows, premium giveaways, and celebrity appearances which made up a truly landmark 36th season in franchise history which culminated with a Mills Cup Championship Series berth.

On Olerud’s commendation, Potomac Nationals Chairman and CEO, Art Silber said, “We are delighted that the Carolina League has chosen our Vice President and General Manger, Josh Olerud as the Carolina League Executive of the Year to recognize the extraordinary job he has done for the Potomac Nationals. This past season was a record setting year for our ball club, with high marks set in attendance, game revenue, and sponsorship revenue. Josh’s interaction with fans, sponsors, players, and staff has afforded the club the opportunity to reach new heights. I congratulate him and know that this is only the beginning of what is to come for the Potomac Nationals franchise.”

Amidst a blockbuster 2013 season which featured a record tally of sponsorship revenue, Olerud also remained focused on the mission of keeping the Potomac Nationals connected with their local community in Northern Virginia. The Potomac Nationals raised over $100,000 in 2013 across all of their fundraising branches using the following conduits: the P-Nats’ annual hot stove banquet and sports memorabilia auction to benefit S.P.A.R.K. (Supporting Partnerships and Resources for Kids) of Prince William County, Uncle Slam’s Reading Program, a trio of community nights, featured non-profit organization nights, a slew of commemorative jersey auctions with proceeds dedicated to Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic, Autism Speaks, and nearby Osbourn Park High School. Also featured as part of this community initiative was the annual Nationals golf tournament in conjunction with SYA Baseball, a pair of Military Appreciation Nights in partnership with Homes for Heroes, Hope For The Warriors, and the USO; the Guns vs. Hoses annual charity softball classic, and a milestone “Hire-A-Vet” program to usher in the hiring of military veterans interested in a career within the Minor League Baseball landscape.

Under the direction of Olerud, the Potomac Nationals also ran a silent sports auction at The Pfitz to directly to victims of the tornadoes that hit the state of Oklahoma back in May thanks to a partnership with the OK Strong Disaster Relief Fund.

“Josh is great choice for this award,” said Carolina League President, John Hopkins. “During his time at Potomac, the operation has been growing and improving in every respect. It’s a well deserved honor.”

During the 2013 season, which featured a franchise record 84 wins and the best winning percentage in club history (.604), Olerud laid out the P-Nats’ red carpet for a slew of Major League rehabilitation stars from the Washington Nationals including, LHP Ross Detwiler, RHP Christian Garcia, LF Bryce Harper, RHP Ross Ohlendorf, C Wilson Ramos, RF Jayson Werth, and 3B Ryan Zimmerman to Pfitzner Stadium. Notably, Harper’s first contest as a Potomac National on June 25th garnered a capacity crowd of 8,495 fans.

As a compliment to the promotional efforts of Olerud and his team to energize the P-Nats’ fan base and proliferate the mission of hosting the most fan-friendly atmosphere possible, the Potomac club used this potent home field advantage on the field to turn in the best 2013 home record in the Carolina League at (47-23).

The Carolina League’s Calvin Falwell Executive of the Year Award was named in 2006 for the man who had been president of the Lynchburg club since that city joined the league in 1966. Falwell served the league as an officer, director, and representative to Minor League Baseball’s Board of Trustees. Falwell passed away at age 90 on August 20th, 2011.

NATS/P-NATS: Potomac Nationals Set Single-Season Attendance Record

During a Hallmark 2013 Carolina League Campaign,
a Record 236, 772 Fans Entered The Pfitz to Enjoy P-Nats Baseball

Woodbridge, VA—The Potomac Nationals are delighted to announce that a new franchise single-season attendance record at Pfitzner Stadium has been set after 236,772 fans enjoyed P-Nats Baseball during a hallmark 2013 Carolina League regular season.

An average of 3,534 fans per game entered The Pfitz during the Nationals’ 2013 regular campaign to be a part of the most affordable and entertaining family friendly atmosphere in Northern Virginia.

The P-Nats’ record attendance number registered in 2013 shattered the previous benchmark of 220,145 set in 1998 by the Prince William Cannons (St. Louis Cardinals).

In the 36th season of the Potomac franchise, The Potomac Nationals finished the Carolina League season ranked fourth in the eight-team circuit in overall and single-game average 2013 attendance.

With an attendance mark of over 235,000 fans, the P-Nats have now eclipsed the 200,000 fan threshold for the eleventh time in franchise history dating back to the 1990 Prince William Cannons (New York Yankees) who accomplished this feat for this first time.

On the field, the Potomac Nationals set single-season franchise records for both wins (84) and winning percentage (.604). The Nationals also owned the best home record in the Carolina League, a win/loss ledger of (47-23).

Potomac captured both the First- and Second-Half Northern Division Championship titles in 2013 and beat the Lynchburg Hillcats (Atlanta Braves) in the 2013 Carolina League Northern Division Playoff Series to advance to the 2013 Mills Cup Championship. The Nationals came up short in their bid for the club’s fifth all-time championship crown falling in three straight games in the best-of-five series to the 2013 Carolina League Champion, Salem Red Sox (Boston).

P-Nats fans witnessed a star-studded cast of players in 2013 including a slew of mid-season Carolina League All-Stars (OF Billy Burns, C Adrian Nieto, LHP Robbie Ray, and RHP Blake Schwartz) and a trio of year-end Carolina League All-Stars (RHP Robert Benincasa, Burns, and CF Michael Taylor).

In ’13, the P-Nats welcomed a faction of Major League rehabilitation stars from the Washington Nationals including, LHP Ross Detwiler, RHP Christian Garcia, LF Bryce Harper, RHP Ross Ohlendorf, C Wilson Ramos, RF Jayson Werth, and 3B Ryan Zimmerman to Pfitzner Stadium.
These additional franchise records were set or tied during the 2013 season:
-Career Doubles (74-Taylor)
-Total Saves in a Single-Season (42-Tied) [1997, Prince William Cannons-St. Louis Cardinals]
-Most Wins Without a Loss by One Pitcher (RHP Greg Holt-9 Wins, 0 Losses-Tied)

During their blockbuster 2013 season, the Potomac Nationals continued their mission of staying connected with their local community in Northern Virginia. After 36 seasons in the record books as a Carolina League franchise, the P-Nats remain steadfast with their longstanding tradition of giving back to people in our own backyard including non-profit organizations, local schools, and those in times of need.

The Potomac Nationals raised over $100,000 in 2013 across all of their fundraising branches.

As a precursor to each season, the Potomac Nationals host an annual hot stove banquet featuring special guests from the Washington Nationals and a sports memorabilia silent auction. All of the funds raised during this sports auction go directly to S.P.A.R.K. (Supporting Partnerships and Resources for Kids), a support arm of the Prince William County Public School system. Helping students reach their full potential by supporting this academic enrichment program has been a terrific way for the Potomac Nationals to usher in the baseball season for the last five years.

In 2013, the Potomac Nationals sent the most viral member of the front office team, the official mascot, Uncle Slam, out into elementary schools to remind children how important reading is to their development as a young person. Uncle Slam’s Reading Program kicks off in February and runs through the month of June and has been a trademark community program for the P-Nats for the last decade. Uncle Slam rewards children for reading four books by coming out to their school and performing a live action reading of Casey At Bat along with members of the Nationals’ staff. This reading program has become an annual staple of the P-Nats’ community outreach initiatives. Over 200,000 kids have been impacted over the last ten seasons by this reading program.

Following the impact of the torrential tornadoes in the state of Oklahoma, the Nationals decided to step up to the plate and help the families who had lost so much in these storms. A sports memorabilia auction on the Pfitzner Stadium concourse featured items from around the Major League Baseball, Minor League Baseball, National Football League, and National Basketball Association landscapes. One hundred percent of these funds went directly to the OKStrong Disaster Relief Fund in an effort to better the lives of the people in Oklahoma irreconcilably damaged by these twisters.

All season long, the Nationals offer a unique fundraising opportunity for non-profit organizations, schools, and charity groups in which these members may purchase general admission tickets and then re-sell the tickets for a profit in an effort to raise money for their association. In addition, these groups receive special tickets with the organization printed on the face of the ticket while being featured on the video board in the outfield and over the public address microphone during the game. Also, these groups have the chance to run 50/50 raffles to further their fundraising opportunity. This is a truly a remarkable win/win program for community group leaders in Northern Virginia and the Potomac Nationals. HomeAid Northern Virginia, a non-profit started in 2001 by the members of the Northern Virginia Building Industry Association (NVBIA), took advantage of this fundraising opportunity with P-Nats Baseball for the last three seasons. A continued success for both their organization and the Potomac Nationals, HomeAid Northern Virginia is proud to report they have completed 77 projects valued at nearly $12 million. Exposure at Pfitnzer Stadium affords HomeAid Northern Virginia the invaluable opportunity to network with other businesses, give back to the homeless population, and raise funds which go back to those people who live without a home in our community.

This season, in association with the Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Mid-Atlantic branch, the Nationals hosted a commemorative game used and autographed jersey auction which featured an appearance by Washington Redskins Super Bowl Quarterback, Joe Theismann. The Redskins legend visited with the Make-A-Wish kids, signed autographs for the P-Nats faithful, and most importantly granted the wishes of many children who have life-threatening illnesses.

In addition, the Nationals, in conjunction with Autism Speaks and title sponsor, Lindsay Automotive, ran a special jersey auction in 2013 to benefit the non-profit group on Autism Awareness Day at The Pfitz. Autism Speaks received all funds raised in the jersey auction and had the opportunity to disseminate autism awareness information throughout the ballgame to promote understanding of this disorder.
Furthermore, the Potomac franchise, in a joint partnership with a non-profit organization, holds an annual charity golf tournament. In 2013, to benefit SYA Baseball, the Nationals held their golf tourney on the links at Old Hickory Golf Club, a local private golf course in Woodbridge, VA which is a long fly ball from Pfitzner Stadium. Members of the Washington Nationals and Potomac Nationals staffs in addition to P-Nats sponsors, season ticket holders, and group leaders collaborate for a fun afternoon of golf to support a great cause.

Osbourn Park High School Night at Pfitzner Stadium in 2013 was a grand success for the neighborhood public school and the Nationals. Students from OPHS came out in droves to support an evening of baseball directly engineered to benefit the schools’s athletic department. The P-Nats wore Osbourn Park Baseball replica jerseys that evening and the team ran a silent auction to decide which fans would take home the autographed uniform tops. The Nationals hope to make this an annual partnership with local high school athletic departments after a great fan response and following a sizeable contribution made to OPHS Athletics.

Homes for Heroes in combination with the P-Nats Annual Military Appreciation Nights has become an invaluable partnership for both entities after another successful affiliation in 2013. Homes for Heroes is a company that affiliates with realtors, lenders, and other real estate-related service providers who offer substantial rebates and discounts to the Heroes who serve our nation and its communities every day. Our Heroes include military personnel, firefighters, law enforcement officers and others who make our communities a better place to live. Homes for Heroes was out in force on both Military Appreciation Nights in 2013 to spread the message of how our community’s Heroes can benefit from aligning with the non-profit organization.

To piggyback local heroes benefiting from coming out to Pfitzner Stadium in 2013, the P-Nats hosted the second annual Guns vs. Hoses Charity Softball Game as members of the Prince William County Police Department squared off against the Yorkshire Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department. An array of police officers and fire department members and their families enjoyed a relaxing day at the ballpark while renewing a yearly rivalry by competing in softball on the very same field used by the future stars of the Washington Nationals. Both the PWC Police Department and the Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Squad were able to provide safety tips to fans, display emergency vehicles, and be recognized for the invaluable work they do while protecting our neighborhoods.

In a milestone move to acknowledge the exceptional capabilities of our country’s military members to influence their community once home from war, the Potomac Nationals became the first team in Minor League Baseball to institute a hiring program specifically engineered to usher in United States military members. The “Hire-A-Vet” program was initiated with the hiring of Arthur Bouvier IV, a U.S. Army veteran, who was brought into the Potomac Nationals’ fold as the Assistant Director of Stadium Operations. Bouvier has assisted the ballclub as an all-utility man working as a troubleshooter in many different aspects of stadium operation including ballpark maintenance, grounds crew, parking, press box operations, and security. This initiative stemmed directly from one of the Army Chief of Staff, General Ray Odierno’s top priorities of assisting soldiers transitioning from the Army, as well as Army Reserve and National Guard soldiers in finding jobs.

In the aftermath of a 2013 Mills Cup Championship Series appearance, it is clear that the 36th season of the Potomac franchise yielded the most fan-friendly, entertaining, and community oriented campaign in the history of the club. The on-field prowess of the future leading lights for the Washington Nationals complemented the perennial promotion by the club to make for a record-setting 2013 campaign.

The Potomac Nationals of the Carolina League play at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge, Virginia, and are the Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Washington Nationals. P-Nats 2014 season tickets and mini plans are now on sale. Sponsorship opportunities for the 2014 season and beyond are available. Plan your corporate outing now for the 2014 season to see the future stars of the Washington Nationals at The Pfitz as the P-Nats offer discounted group rates and all-inclusive picnic options. Visit the P-Nats online at www.potomacnationals.com or call the ticket office at 703-590-2311 for more information!

NATS/P-NATS: Potomac Nationals Announce Starting Rotation for Playoffs

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The Potomac Nationals announce their starting pitching rotation for the upcoming best-of-three 2013 Carolina League Northern Division Playoff Round against the Lynchburg Hillcats (Atlanta Braves) to be hosted at Pfitzner Stadium beginning with Game One on Wednesday, September 4th at 7:05pm:

*Game One (9/4): LHP Sammy Solis (2-1, 3.43)

*Game Two (9/5): RHP Blake Schwartz (11-4, 2.65)

*Game Three (9/6) [if necessary]: LHP Matt Purke (5-3, 4.43)

The winner of the Carolina League’s Northern Division Series receives a berth to the best-of-five 2013 Mills Cup Championship Series to face the pennant winner of the Southern Division. Per Carolina League rules on odd years, Potomac will host the first two games of the Championship Series on Saturday, September 7th and Sunday, September 8th should they qualify by winning the Division Series.

Potomac Nationals Players Earn Carolina League Weekly Awards


Woodbridge, VA—After a tremendous start to the 2013 campaign, Potomac Nationals shortstop Jason Martinson (5th Rd.,2010), a product of Texas State University, from Dallas, TX, has earned his second consecutive Carolina League’s Player of the Week Award for his production from April 15th through April 21st, the league announced today.

Martinson, the #14 prospect in the Washington Nationals Minor League system per Baseball America, entered the 4/15 week with a .303 (10-for-33) batting average, a .429 on base percentage, a .788 slugging percentage through nine games, with four home runs and 11 runs batted in.

Martinson continued his prowess at the plate into the next week by turning in a 10-for-28 performance with the bat, good for a .357 batting average in the week, while achieving an on-base percentage mark of .419, and a slugging percentage clip of .500.

The 24-year-old also cranked one double and one four-bagger, while collecting four RBIs, four runs scored, and three walks during his latest weekly tear.

The 6’1″, 190 pound Nationals prospect enters tonight’s contest with the Carolina Mudcats (Cleveland Indians) in Zebulon, NC tied for the Carolina League lead with 15 RBIs, a .635 slugging percentage, and 40 total bases. The offensive assassin is also tied for the circuit lead in home runs (5) and is 10th in the CL in batting (.317).

Sealing the sweep for Potomac in the league’s weekly awards, RHP Taylor Hill, after an absolute gem spun against the Frederick Keys (Baltimore Orioles) in Game One of the doubleheader last Saturday on April 20th, was announced today as the winner of the Carolina League Pitcher of the Week Award.

Hill, the 24-year-old whom Baseball America says has the “Best Control” in the Washington Nationals farm system, was selected in the 6th round in 2011 out of Vanderbilt University.

Hill, a native of Old Hickory, TN, is (3-0) on the season after a terrific pair of starts on April 15th at Salem and on April 20th vs. Frederick as he went (2-0) over the course of the week with victories over the Red Sox and Keys. He combined to pitch to a 0.69 earned run average over 13.0 innings in the two outings in which he surrendered just five total base hits, one earned run, zero home run balls, no hit batters, and one walk, while striking out eleven batters.

The only pitcher on the P-Nats staff with three victories, Hill dominated the Keys in his third start of the season tossing a one-hitter over seven shutout innings, and earning the complete game win.

The Nationals have now garnered three of the four Carolina League weekly awards in 2013.

NATS/P-NATS: Potomac Nationals Taylor and Karns Named Carolina League Players of the Week

Taylor, Karns Named Carolina League Players of the Week
P-Nats Sweep Player of the Week Awards for July 16-22

(WOODBRIDGE, VA) – The Carolina League has announced that OF Michael Taylor and RHP Nathan Karns have been named Players of the Week for the week of July 16th to 22nd. It’s the first week Potomac has swept the awards.

Taylor earns his first Hitter of the Week award in his professional baseball career batting .483 (14-for-29) over seven games. Of those 14 hits, eight of them came in consecutive plate appearances over the weekend against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Taylor also hit his first three home runs of the season including a grand slam, the first by a P-Nat in 2012. For the week, Taylor scored 13 times and drove in eight runs while slugging .931.

Taylor, 21, is hitting .245 on the year and his third in the Carolina League with 29 doubles. The speedy centerfielder also shares the team lead with 44 runs and ranks in a tie for third with 15 stolen bases through 100 games.

For Karns, 24, this is the second time this season that he has earned the award for Pitcher of the Week. He shut down the Lynchburg Hillcats last Monday firing six scoreless innings yielding only a single and two walks for the win. Karns’ second start of the week was even better as he threw six hitless innings on Saturday against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans with the only runner reaching base on an error. In that game, Potomac was two outs shy of throwing a no-hitter. For his two starts, Karns was 2-0 tossing 12 scoreless innings surrendering only one hit and striking out eight batters.

In his first full season of professional baseball, Karns is locking down the Carolina League. His 1.88 ERA and 0.82 WHIP would be tops in the league if he had the necessary amount of innings to qualify. Karns is 6-0 in his last seven starts and has not lost a decision since June 9th.

The Potomac Nationals are celebrating their 35th Anniversary of professional baseball and family fun, for all your ticket needs please call the box office at 703-590-2311 or visit www.potomacnationals.com.

NATS/P-NATS: Ricky Hague Named Carolina League Hitter of the Week

Rick Hague Named Carolina League Player of the Week – Washington Nationals 1924 Throwback Night, 7/05/2012. (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Ricky Hague Earns Carolina League Hitter of the Week Award
First Potomac Hitter to be Named Player of the Week

Potomac Nationals INF Ricky Hague has been named the Carolina League Hitter of the Week for the week of June 25th to July 1st. Hague becomes the first P-Nat to earn a hitter of the week honor this season.

Hague recorded a hit in all seven games last week for Potomac sporting a .464 (13-for-28) average. Of his 13 hits, six were extra-base hits including a homer. He also scored eight runs while knocking in 6 RBI. For the week, the Spring, TX native reached base at a .516 clip and slugged .750 while also stealing five bases without being caught.

Hague, 23, s hitting .242 with 12 steals over 53 games with Potomac after starting the year on the DL recovering from shoulder surgery. Hague played in just four games last season with Potomac due to a shoulder injury suffered sliding head first into second base. He was a 2010 3rd Round pick (83rd overall) out of Rice.

Tonight Hague and the Nationals finish a six-game road trip as they face the Carolina Mudcats in Zebulon, NC at 7:15 PM. Potomac returns home July 4th facing the Frederick Keys at 6:35 PM to start a six game homestand. The Potomac Nationals are celebrating their 35th Anniversary of professional baseball and family fun, for all your ticket needs please visit www.potomacnationals.com.

NATS/P-NATS: Nathan Karns Named Carolina League Pitcher of the Week

Nathan Karns Named Carolina League Pitcher of the Week
Karns Becomes First P-Nat to Win Weekly Award

(WOODBRIDGE, VA) – The Carolina League has named Potomac righty Nathan Karns the Pitcher of the Week for the week of June 11th to 17th. Karns won the award by tossing six and two-thirds scoreless innings striking out ten batters on Friday, June 15th at Myrtle Beach.

Karns, 24, was dominant in a 3-0 win for the Nationals on Friday night against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans in South Carolina. He struck out ten batters allowing just two walks and four hits earning his first Carolina League win. This is the first pitcher of the week award in the career of Karns. Also, he becomes the first Potomac player to earn a player of the week award in 2012.

A 12th Round pick in the 2009 Draft out of Texas Tech, Karns missed all of 2010 with a shoulder injury. He didn’t make his pro debut until June of 2011 and this is his full first year of professional baseball. He started the year going 3-0 with a 2.03 ERA in 44 1/3 innings with Hagerstown (A – South Atlantic League) striking out 61 batters. With Potomac, Karns is 1-2 with a 4.15 ERA over three starts he’s tossed 13 innings striking out 19 batters. He has allowed just one homer over 57 1/3 innings this season over two levels.

The Texas native is scheduled to make his next start at 1:05 on Sunday against the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

The Nationals return to action after the All-Star Break on Thursday against the Winston-Salem Dash at 7:05 in Woodbridge. The Potomac Nationals are celebrating their 35th Anniversary of professional baseball and family fun, for all your ticket needs please call the box office at 703-590-2311 or visit www.potomacnationals.com.

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