There’s Strasburg, of course, but also Adam Eaton, a brindle with floppy ears, Anthony Rendon, a German Shepherd mix with a handsome grin, Gerardo Parra, a Labrador-terrier mix with white socks, Howie Kendrick, an American bulldog mix with a polka-dot nose, Juan Soto, a terrier mix with a white blaze down his snout, Ryan Zimmerman, a German Shepherd mix with a white chest, and Trea Turner, a 7-year-old blond with a goofy smile.
The dogs made their debuts on HRA’s Instragram page on Tuesday, capturing the hearts of dog lovers all over the District, as well as one influential benefactor: Rachel Strasburg, the Game 2 winner’s spouse.
Her family sponsored the $250 adoption fee for Strasburg the pooch.
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Nationals' pitcher Stephen Strasburg brought the heat last night, and canine Stephen Strasburg brought the cute! He was adopted last night into a loving home where he'll be doling out plenty of love. Thank you to Stephen Strasburg and his family for generously sponsoring this pup's adoption fee.
The Strasburgs aren’t the only Nationals family pitching in to cover adoption fees. Max Scherzer and his wife Erica May-Scherzer sponsor every dog with heterochromia, or two different colored eyes, just like the team’s ace.
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Johnny and Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer have something in common: they have two different color eyes! Johnny will be cheering him on tonight during the first game of the World Series. He's also looking for a comfy new home where he's the only dog (don't worry, he has plenty of love to give). This calm eight-year-old is looking for a couch and a family to call his own! Think Johnny is the one? Email his foster parent, Tia Watkins (firstname.lastname@example.org), to meet him! Because of his heterochromia, Johnny's adoption fee is waived thanks to the generosity of Erica and Max Scherzer.
“It helps people feel connected to the players and helps them see them as really compassionate people who love animals just like they do,” Lisa LaFontaine, HRA’s president and chief executive, said in a phone interview. “I’ve seen some of the folks when they find out [the adoption fees are covered]. It’s a really exciting day when people are adding to their family. They’re already really happy, really excited and they’re sitting their filling out their forms and getting final instructions about their animal and they find out their adoption has been generously paid for.
“Yesterday it was the Strasburgs, before it was the Scherzers. They just feel this connection and it makes the players and their families feel more relatable. There’s a real special buzz going on right now, but when cities love their sports teams, people love to feel that, and this just brings it to another level.”
Future dog parents have poured in to adopt members of the “line-pup.” As of Thursday afternoon, only Howie Kendrick, Gerardo Parra, Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon remain at HRA’s facility at 71 Oglethorpe St. NW.
LaFontaine said she expects the remaining dogs to be gone by the time the Nationals host the Astros in Game 3 of the World Series on Friday night. The average dog only stays with HRA for seven days before finding a home, she said, and these are no average dogs.
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