A lot of people remain quite upset about what happened at Nats opening day. With a stadium oversold with groups of the other team’s fans–who happen to be legendary as some of the worst fans in sports–what could have been a beautiful opening day became a miserable experience for many.
One of the longest threads of comment-venting about this is on Mark Zuckerman’s Nats Insider. (Of course, Mark, who first dug into this, is an independent journalist and not a mainstream-media reporter.) There are 152 comments as I write this. Mark seems to have been the first to publish Stan Kasten’s rather clueless and cynical response to a query about selling seats to hordes of opponents on Opening Day:
“Both season tickets are sold, and groups are booked, all through the winter, for every game,” Nationals president Stan Kasten said via email this morning. “All of this is before any individual game tickets go on sale.”
The Washington Post got on the case about four hours later, when Dan Steinberg posted in the DC SportsBog Kasten’s response to him. (Note the craven and clueless tagline, implying that we fans are simpletons.)
“We sell season tickets and book groups all winter long. For every game of the season. All of this is before any individual tickets go on sale. Most of our groups are local. Some are from out of town. It’s really that simple.”
The story finally made the Post’s dead-tree edition (as well as its melange of various online versions), so I guess it’s a “real story” now.
Okay. Whatever. After a day of angst and agita, I’ve decided that it really comes down to the famous “product on the field.” Fact is, the Nats still aren’t very good. Fact is, they played the Phillies, arguably the best team in baseball, on Opening Day. Fact is, said Phillies started one of baseball’s most dominant pitchers against the Nats’ slightly improved lineup.
Tonight it’s the Nats’ Jason Marquis versus the Phils’ Cole Hamels. Maybe a more reasonable matchup. Is Marquis all he’s cracked up to be? Is Hamels still in his slump from last year?
Alas, I can’t watch the game either live or on TV because of a conflict. So tell me how bad it is later on, okay?