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Washington Nationals adding Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez and Tim Raines to Nationals Park’s Ring of Honor...

Tim Raines will join Expos’ greats Gary Carter and Andre Dawson, and Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez will be the first Nationals’ player added to the Ring of Honor in Nationals Park.

Photo © and courtesy Ian Koski/NatsDailyNews

Gary Carter talked about the pride he felt when he learned the Washington Nationals were inducting him into the “Ring of Honor” in Nationals Park back in 2011, when he and fellow former Montreal Expos’ Hall of Famer Andre Dawson were honored in the nation’s capital.

“I just don't have enough words to express my feelings, because I'm just overwhelmed,” Carter said.

“I really had no idea that this was transpiring, I thought they were just going to honor Andre and I was going to catch the first pitch, that's all I knew so, now that the name will be up there on that ring is something that I'm really proud of."

Carter also talked about the history of the franchise and the Nationals’ decision to acknowledge and honor the past.

“I know that they initially have acknowledged and remembered the greats that were Washington Senators and that's understandable,” Carter said.

Photo © and courtesy Ian Koski

“I mean Walter Johnson comes to mind right away, Harmon Killebrew, some of the greats that had a Washington Senators' uniform on, and some of the players from the Negro Leagues and stuff like that that have been recognized, and to be a part of that ring up there is something that's very special.

“I don't know if their intentions are to do more, this is a start, there is a tie I feel, an association with obviously the 37 years spent on the field with the Expos, and that organization came here to Washington and they're just going to expound on it, I feel, and try to make it a better organization.”

The Nationals have certainly done that, transforming the organization they inherited into a perennial contender that’s on the way to their fourth postseason appearance in the last six seasons.

Washington will continue to honor their shared history this coming week.

On Monday night, the Nationals will add a few more names to the Ring of Honor, with Expos’ great Tim Raines and one-time National Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez joining the Montreal and D.C.-based players who are already on the facade below the second deck in Nationals Park.

Raines, of course, never played a game in the nation’s capital, so there should be yet another fun round of arguments about acknowledging the Montreal past of the franchise.

Rodriguez played 155 games with the Nationals in the final two seasons of his 21-year MLB career.

Both players were inducted into the Hall of Fame last month, one of the criteria for inclusion in the Ring of Honor.

1. The player had to be elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

2. The player had to have played with the Washington Nationals, Washington Senators, Homestead Grays or Montreal Expos

3. The player had to have played significant years with those teams.

Raines and Rodriguez will join former Washington Senators’ Joe Cronin, Rick Ferrell, Goose Goslin, Clark Griffith, Bucky Harris, Walter Johnson, Harmon Killebrew, Heinie Manush, Sam Rice, Earl Wynn, and Frank Howard, the Homestead Grays’ Cool Papa Bell, Ray Brown, Josh Gibson, Buck Leonard, Cumberland Posey, and Jud Wilson, the Expos’ Carter and Dawson, and Frank Robinson, who bridged the gap between the two teams, managing the Expos and Nationals.