This story was updated at 10:45 a.m. Nov. 2, 2019, to correct a reference to the Washington Nationals advancing to the World Series.
When the Washington Nationals won the World Series late Wednesday night, some fans were eager to wear their pride, as soon as possible.
Some area sporting goods immediately displayed shirts, hats and other gear saluting the Nationals success. Fans poured in, creating a shopping crush at places such as Modell’s Sporting Goods in Bethesda late Wednesday into early Thursday.
Scott Berman of Bethesda was part of the Modell’s late-night crowd with his 12-year-old son Sammy and one of Sammy’s friends. Berman said he ran into multiple friends there, all with the same idea after the Nats came from behind to win the seventh and final game.
It was probably after midnight when Berman joined the throng at Modells. “It was jam packed,” he said in an interview Thursday. There was some urgency in the crowd because of the limited supply of adult and children’s merchandise.
He bought championship shirts for his three boys —Sammy, 9-year-old Jack and 5-year-old Isaac. He bought victory hats for himself and his father.
A Modells employee said Friday that the store had received a new supply of Nationals merchandise.
Berman said he made a similar late-night trip for gear after the Washington Capitals won their first Stanley Cup last year, but the turnout for Nationals merchandise was larger.
Adam Eisner of Bethesda also went out for Capitals gear right after the Stanley Cup win, then again after the Nationals won the National League pennant to advance to the World Series.
When he headed to Modells late Wednesday night after watching the World Series win at home, his sons Matt, 15, and Andy, 12, were with him. They came back with T-shirts for the boys and their sister, Lauren, 8.
Lauren didn’t follow the team closely, but joined in for the commotion of the celebration as the game ended.
Andy, 12, left, and Matt, 15, went with their father, Adam Eisner, to gets Nationals T-shirts after Wednesday night’s World Series win.
Eisner said Modells was very crowded and had a surprisingly good choice of merchandise beyond T-shirts. It was an excited group of customers, with some people exchanging high-fives. Like Berman, Eisner said he ran into friends there, as did his sons.
Father and sons were tired after a long night, “but there was no way I was going to miss it,” Eisner said.
The World Series title was the first for the Nationals in their franchise history, going back 50 years, when the team was the Montreal Expos. The team moved to D.C. in 2005.
Berman — who grew up seeing the Tidewater Tides minor league team while living in Virginia Beach — has been a Nationals season ticket holder for seven years and attended almost every home playoff game this year.
Berman said he and his wife, Hillary, have busy work schedules, and with three children, he considered not renewing their season tickets beyond this year. To get playoff tickets this year, he would have had to commit to season tickets for next year, he said.
He was leaning against renewing — then changed his mind, went to playoff games with his family and loved it, particularly the enthusiasm and energy among the fans.
“It’s been a wild ride and I wouldn’t trade it for the world,” Berman said.