Happy Birthday Matt Capps!

Posted by Cheryl Nichols | 9/03/2010 08:54:00 AM | , , , , , | 2 comments »


Even though Matt is now with the Minnesota Twins, Capps won over the Nats fans and wish him success. The Washington Nationals traded closer Matt Capps to the Twins for top catching prospect Wilson Ramos and LHP Joe Testa.

It was a great business decision for the organization, but it was hard to see Matt go. Nats fans got to see him in a Nats uniform last week when the TopChef DC episode aired that was filmed in May and were reminded of his sense of humor and good nature.

RHP Matt Capps earned save #20, 6/09/2010

Matt Capps was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2002 and was with the Pirates organization through the 2009 season. The Nats signed him in January 2010 for a one year $3.5 million deal. He had a great first half of the season and probably turned out to be the best off-season signing for the Nationals.

Matt Capps was selected as the Nationals player for the All-Star Game

Capps was the lone All-Star representative for the Nationals and made fans very proud. Not only did he get a chance to pitch, he struck out David "Big Papi" Ortiz! The NL scored while he was pitcher of record so he became the first winning National League pitcher since 1996!  Here are a few photos of his All-Star experience.

Capps made Nats proud!

Matt Capps' last game with the Nationals was the day game on Thursday, July 29, 2010, against the Atlanta Braves,  when he earned his 26th save of the season. To refresh memories, that is the same day that Stephen Strasburg went on the DL for the first time and Scott Olsen was activated.  The very next day, he earned his first save for the Minnesota Twins.

Another great performance

In his short time in Washington, Matt gave back to the community whenever possible.  He jumped on board the Nationals' Winter Caravan (only a few days after he signed) which not only allowed him to meet Nats fans, but gave him the opportunity to visit patients undergoing treatment at the Children's National Medical Center.  During the season, Matt gave up his personal free time to visit children at INOVA Fairfax Hospital and a return trip to the Childrens' Medical Center.  Capps also made a trip to the Walter Reed Medical Center to visit wounded soldiers.

PG County's Sports & Learning Complex during Winter Caravan, 1/30/2010

Capps only played for the Nationals for four months, however, was submersed in the community so his departure was a loss to the whole DC area. His efforts didn't go unrecognized.

Matt Capps was nominated for a "SneakerBall" award which celebrates the best of sports in the Greater Washington D.C. region.  Capps is up for the "Solid Character Award" which is presented to the professional athlete that best exemplifies community and charitable qualities.  Voting ends Friday, September 3 (Matt's Birthday) so please click here to vote now!

Best of luck in Minnesota Matt Capps. Thank you for hard work on and off the field. You're a class act and hopefully we'll see you back in NatsTown one day. Happy Birthday!

The crowd would chant "Let's Go Capps"
(same chant done at Verizon Center for the Washington Capitals NHL team)

Matt Capps earned save #25, 7/27/2010

Sitting in the Nats dugout, 4/20/2010

Photos 2010 © Cheryl Nichols Photography/
Nats News Network. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Shoshana // September 3, 2010 at 10:24 AM  

    Why do I feel sad looking at your post? I know that a closer on a non-contending team is a luxury, and that we can't get too attached to players, but he was/is SUCH a nice guy that it is sad that he is not part of our team anymore. For his sake I am happy that he is playing for a (likely) post-season bound team.

  2. Cheryl Nichols // September 3, 2010 at 11:19 AM  

    Sorry Shoshana. I didn't mean to make you sad. :( I understand though. It is always hard to see "good guys" leave the team. He pitched better than expected and became a favorite with fans. Hopefully we can cheer him on during the post-season.