Batter Up! Ticket Snafu Leads to Drama at Congressional Baseball Game


A mix of baseball fans, Capitol Hill lawmakers, staffers and journos gathered at Nationals Park Tuesday night for the ever popular 49th annual Roll Call Congressional Baseball Game.

But it wasn’t all fun and games.

There was a ticket snafu at the onset that left at least one congressional staffer near tears and in a state of emotional upheaval over not being allowed into a certain seating section. “She had a meltdown,” one journo remarked. Initially, some journos were unsure if they were going to get in. Some were told by Roll Call employees that it was not certain that tickets would become available. Eventually, for some, they were. But not without a rocky beginning.

One journo who got into the game witnessed two members of Congress who didn’t because they didn’t have tickets.

Despite initial difficulties, the game went on. For the second straight year, following an eight year losing streak, the Dems prevailed against the Republicans, winning 13 – 5.

The Republican team scored the first run in the opening inning but not again until they tied the score in the bottom of the 6th with an additional three runs. The Dems scored one run in the third inning and during the fourth, Rep. John Boccieri (D-Ohio) and outgoing Rep. Brian Baird (D-Wash.) both hit doubles, leading to two additional runs scored.

Democrats Rep. Steve Driehaus (D-Ohio), Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.), and Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) – the solo female player on her team – among others, helped score an impressive nine runs in the seventh and final inning, tallying the team at a victorious 13 runs.

The inaugural Congressional Baseball game was established in 1909 and first aired on the radio in 1928. After a brief hiatus, the annual game was supported by Roll Call, and today is a charity event for the Washington Literacy Council and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington.

Fishbowl contributor Nick Massella contributed to this report.