We all know about curses and superstitions in baseball. The most notable ones are the Red Sox after trading Babe Ruth and the Chicago Cubs.
There’s one curse that maybe you didn’t know about, and that’s the curse of Gary Carter.
I was reading jokes on Twitter about how Daniel Murphy made it into the playoffs with the Cubs and the Nationals didn’t. That got me thinking. Murphy singlehandedly has a better postseason history than the Nationals.
I didn’t stop there as I started doing some more digging into the Nationals history before they moved to the U.S. and the only logical explanation is that they are so bad because they traded Gary Carter to the Mets decades ago.
As the Montreal Expos, the team made it into the postseason in 1981 and lost in the NLCS to the Dodgers. After that season, they signed Carter to a seven-year deal, but traded him to the Mets following the 1984 season, just three years into the contract.
The Expos just haven’t been the same following the trade. They spent 20 more seasons in Montreal and haven’t made the playoffs a single time during that stretch. To make matters worse, they did theoretically win the division once during that span, but it didn’t count.
More than 100 games into the 1994 season, the Expos were in first place and were on pace to win 105 games. Then, the infamous strike took place and the season was lost. It would have been the best season in Expos/Nationals history and it was lost just like that, which is the very definition of a tough break.
Then the team moved to Washington and acquired some of the best players in baseball, but the streak of bad luck continued. They have now spent 14 seasons as the Nationals and made it to the playoffs four times but have yet to advance to the NLCS.
2018 is the franchises’ 50th season and they won just one postseason series.
For years, Mets fans have joked non-stop about how the Washington based team never won a postseason series. But if you look back to that fateful day they traded Gary Carter, it’s a whole lot worse.