The Nationals continue to shine on the field as one of the top teams in baseball.
The postseason accolades will come in due time, but as the season pushes forward into fall, it's the voice of the Nationals - Charlie Slowes - who finds himself in his own awards race.
Slowes is among 41 veteran broadcasters chosen as candidates for the 2013 Ford C. Frick Award, which is presented annually by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y., for excellence in baseball broadcasting.
More than 12,000 votes were cast in the first round of fan voting on the Hall of Fame's Facebook page. Every broadcaster, active or retired, who has broadcast at least 10 consecutive years for a team or network was eligible for consideration during the first round.
Voting in the Fan Finals begins with a clean slate for each candidate, as vote totals do not carry over from Round One. Bios of each eligible candidate will appear at www.baseballhall.org throughout the voting.
Slowes joined the Nationals in 2005. The 2012 season marks the 15th straight season calling Major League Baseball for Slowes, the original play-by-play voice of the Nats. His post with the Nationals was a return to the Washington, DC area, who became the Radio Voice of the Washington Bullets in 1986 at just 25 years old. He went on to broadcast Bullets game for 11 seasons (1986-87 to 1996-97), the longest run in franchise history until eclipsed by his successor and current Wizards' voice Dave Johnson.
Slowes made the switch to Major League Baseball full time, becoming an original voice of the expansion Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 1998, calling Rays games for their first seven seasons. Slowes is among the many, including Ford Frick Award winner Vin Scully, to enter sports broadcasting after graduating from Fordham University in New York, also having honed his craft on Fordham's 50,000-watt blowtorch, WFUV 90.7 FM. Slowes has also called baseball on the radio for the Orioles on WBAL (1989-1990) and the New York Mets on WFAN (1988, 1991).
The next round of voting on the Hall of Fame's Facebook page will run until 5 p.m. on Oct. 5 and will yield three finalists. Those finalists, along with seven others chosen by a Hall of Fame committee, will be part of the final ballot announced Oct. 9. The 2013 Frick Award winner will be selected by a 21-member electorate, with the winner to be announced at baseball's Winter Meetings in Nashville in early December.
Fans can cast their vote here.